Your baby is here! And you’re excited! Right? At least you’re supposed to be. Sure you’re crying, having difficulty eating, and you’re concerned about being a good mom; but that’s normal right? The truth is, about 85% of new moms may experience the “baby blues.” The previous symptoms happen quite often after delivery and usually resolve on their own in 2-3 weeks. However, debilitating sadness or severe depression following childbirth can be inappropriately labeled. What most don't know is that postpartum depression is quite different than the baby blues and it needs to be addressed quickly and efficiently to avoid any adverse outcomes. Postpartum depression is one of the most common complications associated with women after a recent childbirth, but only 1 in 5 women will report their symptoms.
Postpartum depression tends to begin a few weeks after delivery, but can show up any time before the baby’s first birthday. In order to know if you, or someone you know is dealing with postpartum depression, you must understand who is most at risk for suffering from postpartum depression, recognize the symptoms, and then report to a healthcare professional as soon as possible.
Learn the three R’s!
RISKS - Who is most likely to suffer from postpartum depression? Someone who: Had depression or anxiety during pregnancy
Has a history of mood disorder
Had a traumatic experience during birth
Has significant stress at home
Has little to no support from friends or family
RECOGNIZE - Symptoms can include:
Poor bonding with the newborn
REPORT - Don’t assume the symptoms will resolve, especially if risk factors are present. Contact a medical professional immediately!
Quick Note: Knowing the RISKS and RECOGNIZING the symptoms are important, but REPORTING is imperative.
Postpartum depression is very real and should be taken seriously. Becoming a new mom or a “repeat” mom can cause mild anxiety, but if it persists, please call a medical professional. It could be the matter of life or death.