Mental Health: Postpartum Depression in Women

Friday, May 6, 2022

 

Postpartum Depression in Women

I read an article on CNN talking about the experience of one man and his wife and postpartum depression. It was a sad story because I have known many who showed signs of postpartum depression and would not get help. The mother in the article did seek out help. However, she ended her battle with depression, taking her life and her sons. 


Postpartum depression is not like the baby blues that last a week or so and passes as a woman's hormones change after a child's birth. Instead, postpartum depression lasts long after the baby blues have passed and can develop as late as a year after the birth of a child. 


We put so much pressure on mothers, what is expected of them, and how magical motherhood is. When, in fact, motherhood is hard, and it is not for everyone or what everyone wants, and that is okay. We should talk about the horrors of motherhood so that mothers can receive help earlier.


 Some symptoms of baby blues & postpartum depression that overlap


Appetite problems

Anxiety

Irritability

Mood swings

Trouble sleeping 


Symptoms of Postpartum Depression 


Anxiety 

Change in sleep patterns (sleeping too much or not enough)

Depression

Fear that you're not a good mother

Negative feelings (shame, guilt, hopelessness, worthlessness, and inadequacy

Obstacle bonding with your baby

Recurrent thoughts of death or suicide

Thoughts of harming yourself or your baby

Withdrawing 


Symptoms of Postpartum Depression in Women


If you or someone you know are showing signs of postpartum depression, please help them. The sooner they get help, the better for them and their child. Postpartum depression can significantly impact the whole family, and it does not just get better by itself. 


Less Known Fact: Men can suffer from postpartum depression. Postpartum depression is often associated with mothers but can affect men and often goes unnoticed. 


Resources: 

Screen for PPD. Note that this screening is not a diagnosis, but it is a helpful tool to give to your doctor. 

https://screening.mhanational.org/screening-tools/postpartum-depression/

Call for help: Talk to someone if need be; most states have a designated mental health line but SAMHSA’s National Helpline is open to all living in the US.

English and Spanish: 1-800-662-4357

TTY:1-800-487-4889

https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline




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