What You Need to Know About Post-Partum Depression
January 23, 2019
Everyone’s birth experience is different. Some mothers choose to give birth in hospital, while others are committed to the idea of a home or pool birth. Some mothers sail through labor, confident and at peace. Other mothers may deal with medical problems, or simply exhaustion during labor. We all have our own birth stories, and moms love to share them!
However, there’s another difficult experience which many mothers have, that we don’t talk about: post-partum depression.
And that needs to change. Post-partum depression affects up to 1 in 7 new mothers. In today’s post, we’ll take a look at some key symptoms for post-partum depression. And we’ll talk about some ways you can care for yourself, and where to find help.
How to spot post-partum depression
You may have heard people talk about the baby blues. It’s very common and normal to feel nervous or down immediately after you give birth. In fact, the baby blues affect almost 80% of women. And some studies suggest that it can affect men, too.
Post-partum depression is more than just feeling blue. It’s a serious mental illness. You deserve to be taken seriously and receive the help you need – whether that’s from family, friends, or medical professionals.
You should talk to your doctor about post-partum depression if you:
⁃ start crying often or for no serious reason
⁃ can’t sleep at all OR start to sleep too much
⁃ feel unusually angry, sad, helpless, or anxious
⁃ have frequent stomachaches, headaches, or muscle pains
⁃ struggle to bond with your baby
⁃ stop enjoying your favorite activities
⁃ start thinking about hurting yourself or your baby
Today, there is a lot of support and treatment available for people with post-partum depression. You do not have to suffer on your own. Don’t be afraid to speak up and ask for help.
Taking care of a new baby is time-consuming and stressful. But try to take some time for yourself. Here are some easy ways to give yourself some much-needed attention:
• Ask a close friend or family to take the baby for a few hours. Sometimes you just need a break!
• If you’re having trouble with sleep or muscle pains, try a massage. You’ll release tension you didn’t even know you had.
• Don’t take on unnecessary work. You don’t have to be a perfect, hand-made-everything mom! Use a baby food delivery service like First Spoons so that you can feed your baby healthy food, without all the hassle of meal prep.
• Listen to your favorite music and take some time to just be. It doesn’t have to be long! A quick 3-minute dance around the room can do wonders.
• You can also find lots of advice, support, contacts, and resources at https://www.postpartumdepression.org.