Victory Over Postpartum Depression

During and after pregnancy, your body and mind go through a lot of changes. Reach out for help if you’re feeling empty, emotionless, or unhappy for more than two weeks throughout or after your pregnancy. You can have postpartum depression if you don’t feel like you love or care for your baby. Depression treatment, such as therapy or medication, is effective and will help you and your baby live a healthy life in the future.

Postpartum depression is a topic most of us do not talk about . This moderate to severe mood disorder occurs during the six weeks period when everything is expected to go so well with the new mom and her family. We all need to talk about it because it is real.

My guess is that someone reading this is a mom, knows a mom or one day wants to be a mom. We all need to hear this.

My goal here is that after reading this post you or someone you know life will become better as you :

  • Easily identify the tools you need to fight PPD
  • Recognize the physical changes
  • Be aware of the postpartum period after birth
  • Have faith that there is hope at the end of the tunnel

Our topics will cover:

1.Where does PPD come from?
2.What tools you need to fight this disorder?
3.What are the risk factors?
4.What are the types of PPD?

5. Having hope at the end of the tunnel

1.Where does PPD come from?

After birth, the chemical changes include a rapid reduction in hormones. The precise relationship between this decline and depression is still unknown.

However, it is known that during pregnancy, the levels of estrogen and progesterone, the female reproductive hormones, increase tenfold. Then, following birth, they plummet. The levels of these hormones return to pre-pregnancy levels three days after a woman delivers birth.

In addition to these biological changes, having a baby causes social and psychological changes that increase the risk of depression.

After giving birth, most new mothers endure the “baby blues.” After delivery, about one out of every ten of these women will experience a more severe and long-lasting depression. About one in every 1,000 women develops postpartum psychosis, which is a more dangerous disorder.

Did you know dads can also get PPD?

Yes according to research about 1 in 10 new fathers get depression during the year their child is born. Additionally, postpartum depression is the commonest postpartum complication

2.What tools do you need to fight this disorder?

a)Knowing or being aware of the signs and symptoms which include:

  • Severe fatigue 
  • Lower libido 
  • Frequent mood changes 
  • Problems sleeping 
  • Appetite changes
  •  Severe anger and crankiness
  • Loss of pleasure 
  • Feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, and helplessness 
  • Thoughts of death or suicide 
  • Thoughts of hurting someone else
  • Trouble concentrating or making decisions
  • Being uninterested in your baby or feeling like you’re not bonding with them
  • Teary-eyed all the time, often for no reason
  • Depressed mood – always sad and withdrawn

b)Know what conditions puts you at risk and avoid it

Sleep deprivation. When you’re sleep deprived and overloaded, even simple issues can be difficult to handle. It is so important that you get lots of rest during your postpartum period. Get help if you really need it. You do not have to prove that you are super woman.

Anxiety. You might be worried about being able to care for a newborn.

Self-image. You might be less beautiful, have identity issues, or feel like you’ve lost control over your life. Postpartum depression can be caused by any of these factors. So do your best to relax keeping your support team close by.

c)If you have a history, let your doctor know

If you have a history of depression, tell your doctor as soon as you find out about your pregnancy, or if you’re planning to become pregnant. This could assist your health care provider in being more alert and help you in a timely manner to prevent more severe episodes of depression.

Support groups, counseling, and other therapies, e.g. Anti-anxiety or antidepressant drugs, psychotherapy, and involvement in a support group for emotional support and education are all alternatives for treatment. can help you manage minor depression symptoms. Even if you’re pregnant, your doctor may even prescribe drugs.

If symptoms get worse hospitalization may be needed.

Other helpful tips include:

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  • Ask for help. Let others know how they can help you. This cannot be emphasized enough
  • Be real about your expectations for yourself and baby. For example if you know you cannot handle caring for your baby right now, get help.
  • Exercise , within the limits of any restrictions your doctor may place on your level of activity. Walks directed by your provider can be profitable. Also, getting out of the house for a break is good.
  • Take note that some days will be good and some days will be bad.
  • Eat nutrient dense foods; avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Get closer with your partner — make time for each other and allow him to be a part of caring for you and the baby.
  • Stay in touch with family and friends ; don’t isolate yourself.
  • You can limit visitors when you first go home.
  • You can also screen phone calls.
  • Sleep or rest when your baby sleeps.

3. What are the risk factors of PPD?

Conditions that puts one at risk for developing PPD include:

  • Previous depression ; especially just before getting pregnant.
  • Age at time of pregnancy (the younger you are, the higher the chances)
  • Uncertainty about the pregnancy
  • Children (the more you have, the more likely you are to be depressed in a later pregnancy)
  • Family history of mood disorders
  • Going through an extremely stressful event, like a job loss or health crisis
  • Having a child with special needs or health problems
  • Having multiple births ; twins or triplets
  • Having a history of depression or premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD)
  • Limited social support
  • Living alone and afraid
  • Marital conflict

4.What are the variations of PPD?

Variations in Postpartum Depression
There are three terms that are used to characterize the mood shifts that women experience after giving birth:

In the days following childbirth, up to 70% of women experience the “baby blues.” You may have abrupt mood fluctuations, such as feeling extremely happy and then extremely depressed. You may cry for no apparent cause and experience feelings of impatience, irritability, restlessness, anxiety, loneliness, and sadness.

The newborn blues can persist anywhere from a few hours to up to two weeks following delivery. For the most part, you won’t require medical help if you have the baby blues. Joining a new parents’ support group or interacting with other moms can often be beneficial.
Postpartum depression (PPD) can strike days, weeks, or even months after the birth of a child.

Postpartum depression (PPD) can strike days, weeks, or even months after a baby is born. PPD can strike at any time following the birth of a child, not just the first. You can experience feelings that are comparable to the baby blues, such as grief, despair, anxiety, and crankiness, but they are far more intense.

PPD frequently prevents you from doing the things you need to do on a daily basis. You should consult a health care practitioner, such as your OB/GYN or primary care doctor, if your capacity to function is impaired.

This doctor can assess your depression symptoms and devise a treatment plan for you. If you do not receive treatment for PPD, your symptoms may worsen. Despite the fact that PPD is a serious disorder, it can be managed with medication and counseling.

Postpartum psychosis is a potentially fatal mental disease that can strike new moms. This sickness can strike suddenly, commonly during the first three months after a baby is born. Women can experience auditory hallucinations (hearing things that aren’t actually happening, such as a person talking) and delusions, losing touch with reality (strongly believing things that are clearly irrational). Occurs in 1 /1000 women.

Visual hallucinations (seeing things that aren’t there) are less prevalent than auditory hallucinations. Insomnia (inability to sleep), agitation and anger, pacing, restlessness, and unusual feelings and actions are some of the other symptoms. Women with postpartum psychosis require immediate care and medication.  They may have threatening behavior to cause harm to themselves or their family.

Light at the end of the tunnel

I want you to know that there is help available for you. You are never alone. God is always there for you, but you have to ask Him to help you. The earlier the discovery, the better the treatment. Educate yourself and your partner.

Bottom line

  • If you have signs or symptoms of PPD, talk to your provider about treatment.
  • Certain kinds of counseling can help prevent depression. If you’re at risk for depression, talk to your provider about finding a counselor. 

Many women have PPD after having a baby. It’s the most common problem for new moms. If you think you have PPD, tell your provider.

PPD can make it hard for you to take care of yourself and your baby.

Remember to be patient if medication is needed because they can take up to 3 weeks before improvement is seen and stay positive .

Thank you for stopping by today. I hope that you you never experience PPD, but if you do or know someone who is experiencing it, will recover faster because the signs and symptoms were detected early. Please like, comment or share this post so that others may be helped.

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Published by Marilyn Smith

Hello. My name is Marilyn Smith. I am a Health Specialist with specialized skills in Clinical Practical Nursing, and Midwife of thirty six years. I am also a certified Lactation and Grief Specialist. I am well qualified to assist in meeting your breastfeeding needs. Breastfeeding is indeed the best for your baby. Congratulations on making such a wonderful decision. Consider this your home as we learn about the joys and pains of pregnancy & breastfeeding

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