You must be waiting for the second series of Ladies and Babies. So here we are with a new topic – ‘Postpartum Depression’. We aim to educate our female population about issues and problems we often go through. Always remember, we are the ones who run the world.
Let us get started with today’s topic.
What is Postpartum Depression?
Birth of a baby comes with a lot of powerful emotions like excitement, joy or anxiety. But, sometimes it results in something unexpected like depression.
Research stated that about 80% of new moms suffer from Baby blues after childbirth like mood swings, crying spells, anxiety, and sleep difficulties. Many women face this kind of issue. Baby blues generally begin within 2-3 days after delivery and can last up to 2 weeks.
But in some cases, the women may experience long-lasting depression which is known as postpartum depression. Postpartum psychosis, which is a rare and extreme mood disorder, is also included in this.
Postpartum depression doesn’t mean you are suffering from any kind of weakness. Sometimes the complications of giving birth could also lead to this condition. Prompt treatment could help you manage the symptoms. So don’t take the stress.
What are the Symptoms of Postpartum Depression
The signs and symptoms of postpartum depression are more intense and long-lasting. These symptoms could also interfere in your regular activities and with the ability to care for your baby. Generally, the symptoms start within the first few weeks of delivery or can begin during the pregnancy.
A few signs and symptoms of Postpartum Depression are:
- Severe anxiety and panic attacks
- Overwhelming fatigue or loss of energy
- Recurrent thoughts of death or suicide
- Diminished ability to think clearly, concentrate or make decisions
- intense irritability and anger
- Inability to sleep
- Withdrawing from family and friends
- Excessive crying
- Depressed mood and mood swings
Other then postpartum depression, the women could also suffer from baby blues. Some of the symptoms include mood swings, anxiety, extreme sadness, crying, and so on.
Along with the symptoms of postpartum depression and baby blues, there are severe symptoms of Postpartum psychosis. It includes sleep disturbances, paranoia, excessive energy, and agitation, obsessive thoughts, confusion and disorientation and more. These are the life-threatening symptoms that need immediate medical attention.
What Are the Treatments For PPD?
Generally, PPD goes away on its own within 3-4 months of delivery. But if the symptoms are interfering with your day to day
Counseling/Talk Therapy: Counseling or talk therapy could treat this condition. This treatment involves talking one-on-one with a counselor, therapist, or psychologist. There are two types of counselling that can help in the treatment of PPD:
- Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): This therapy can help people recognize and change their negative thoughts.
- Interpersonal therapy (IPT): It helps the patient understand and work through problematic personal relationships.
Medication: Medication is the second way to treat PPD. The doctor prescribes antidepressants that act on the brain chemical involved in mood regulation. Generally. these antidepressants take a few weeks to improve the condition.
These medicines are considered to be safe during breastfeeding. But still, women should know the benefits and side-effects of these medicines.
Both the treatment methods can be used individually or together for effective results.
What if PPD left untreated?
Untreated PPD can last for months and years. It could affect the health of both the mother and child. There could be life-threatening side effects as well. Untreated PPD can also interfere with her ability to connect with and care for her baby.
Family members and friends are the ones who recognize the symptoms of PPD first. They can encourage the mother to meet a specialist. During PPD, the patient needs emotional support from the family. The family needs to understand the behavior of the patient and provide the required support.
I hope the second part of Ladies and Babies will add some value to your life.
In the above article, we have discussed the Postpartum Depression, its causes, symptoms and the treatment methods. PPD patients need to talk to people about their feelings. This will help avoid serious symptoms. The baby brings a lot of happiness to your lives. Don’t let your conditions like PPD spoil this feeling. Take corrective measures at an early stage to eliminate long-term complications.
Read our previous article of Ladies and Babies series here: Ladies and Babies: Part 1 – Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Next week on Ladies and Babies, we will sketch the Childhood Cancer for you. So stay tuned!
Pass this information and if you need more personalized guidance, contact to the best and experienced Gynaecologist and Psychiatrist now.