What is Postpartum depression?
Postpartum depression is a mental health illness that affects women after they give birth to their baby. Learn more about postpartum depression in our latest blog post.
What is PostPartum Depression?
Many women following childbirth experience an unexplainable sense of sadness, anxiety and mood swings. For new mothers, this condition is quite normal and is often known as the "baby blues" or postpartum depression. Typically these feelings and symptoms go away within two weeks.
If you are a new mother and feel content one minute, but then sad the next, or if you have a hard time concentrating, or have a hard time falling asleep even when your baby is asleep, you may be experiencing postpartum depression.
What are the Symptoms of PostPartum Depression?
The symptoms of postpartum depression include:
- Mood swings
- Feeling sad or depressed
- Feeling hopeless and guilty
- Unexplained weight gain or loss
- Trouble falling or staying asleep
- Loss of appetite
- Crying frequently
- Showing little to no interest in your baby
- No motivation to be active
What can cause postpartum depression?
While the exact cause is not well known, the hormone levels that change during pregnancy are thought to impact postpartum depression. These hormones can produce chemical changes in the brain, which are thought to play a role in depression following giving birth. Postpartum depression is also more likely to occur if you have had postpartum depression following previous births, have a stressful relationship or marriage, had a premature birth, or if you have premenstrual syndrome.
Treatment for Postpartum depression
Unfortunately, any mother can experience depression following birth, no matter her natural disposition. However, the good news is that it is treatable and often temporary! Postpartum depression can be treated through counseling and antidepressants, and often goes away on its own after a few weeks.
While going through postpartum depression can be difficult, treatment can be achievable. If you or a loved one may be experiencing postpartum depression, especially if the symptoms are not subsiding after a few weeks, we encourage you to reach out to a healthcare provider. Contact one of our Garden OB/GYN office locations or book an appointment online to schedule your visit.