One thing should be placed on the table before anything else – postpartum depression among mothers is real. It is not a make-believe issue that mothers raise just to get attention. It is not an imaginary battle that mothers face just to bolt from their responsibilities.
Postpartum depression among mothers is so real that, according to a study, 1 in 8 women may experience symptoms in the year following giving birth. Around 70% of new mothers undergo “baby blues” or mild depression that may possibly lead to postpartum depression.
What causes postpartum depression among mothers?
Women are known for being sensitive and emotional. When they become mothers, their emotions run high because of all the expectations and obligations that they need to fulfill. With a new responsibility, whose entire existence depends on them, they are besieged with overwhelming emotions.
1. Physical Factors
During pregnancy, body hormones are escalating. However once the women give birth, these hormones drop back to their normal level abruptly. These sudden changes significantly contribute to depression.
Other causes that are perceived to be contributing factors include, lack of sleep, lack of nutrition, low thyroid hormone levels, underlying medical problems and alcohol or substance misuse.
2. Emotional Factors
It is highly possible that postpartum depression is caused by emotional stress caused by present problems. New mothers often feel that they become unattractive, they are insufficient as a mother or they suddenly lose the drive to enjoy life.
Other emotional factors that lead to postpartum depression among women are unsupportive spouses, death in the family, health problems of the child or even, financial issues. When mothers have to face these problems while taking care of a newborn, mental breakdown can happen.
What are the early signs of postpartum depression?
Mothers are expected to be prepared for whatever life throws at them in parenting. People assume that being a mother comes with a manual that has all the instructions on what to do and how to do it right with their kids. This assumption alone gives too much pressure and stress.
1. The “baby blues” does not go away.
2. Feeling sad and alone with no reason.
3. Feeling angry, anxious, annoyed or irritable even over petty things.
4. Either cannot sleep even if exhausted or sleeping too much.
5. Having unexplained body aches.
6. Having trouble making decisions and focusing on tasks.
7. Being forgetful.
8. Either eating too much or too little.
9. Isolating and withdrawing self from people.
10. Having difficulty bonding with the baby.
11. Do not enjoy doing your interests and hobbies.
12. Always questioning one’s capability as a mother.
13. Having panic and anxiety attacks.
14. Thinking of harming the baby.
15. Thinking of hurting oneself.
How to treat postpartum depression among mothers?
Postpartum depression requires immediate action. It should not be labeled as untrue and fictitious. Many mothers take no notice of the symptoms because their hands are always full. Some, who recognize the changes, choose to ignore and to just let go until it becomes too late.
Postpartum depression is treatable once it is diagnosed. Many mothers are able to get back on their feet and become more loving and responsible parents.
Doctors prescribe antidepressants that will help stabilize and regulate mood-causing hormones. However, it does not provide instant recovery. It may take weeks for it to work and just like any medication, it has side effects. Most common side effects in taking antidepressants are fatigue, dizziness, indigestion or loss of sexual drive.
Mothers who are breastfeeding can also take antidepressants as long as it is doctor-prescribed. It is important to note that if the side effects get worse, it is better to consult the doctor right away.
As new mothers, it is okay to ask questions, ask for guidance or commit a mistake. No woman is born to be a perfect mother. Every mother needs to be kinder to themselves and to not constantly criticize their abilities. They need to have enough rest, to eat a balanced meal and to exercise. All these promote healthy living and positive disposition in life.
If there is one thing innate in every woman, it is their capacity to give unconditional love to their children. New mothers can ask their spouses and other family members to care for the baby once in a while to go to a spa, go shopping or just doing their hobbies. They should not feel guilty if they want some me-time.
When postpartum depression among mothers becomes too much to handle, it is highly recommended to seek therapy near me and counseling. Mothers must know that prioritizing their mental health is one step from being a great parent.
Mindshift Psychological Services acknowledges the importance of mentally-healthy mothers. Mothers are the backbone of society that will hopefully raise good-mannered individuals. Postpartum depression is a serious issue that needs treatment.
Depression therapy near me provides an avenue for new mothers to open up about the changes, expectations and stress they have to face every single day. They are given their much needed guidance in order to properly handle their new responsibilities.
Visit their website to know more about their services and contact them at (714) 584-9700 to book an appointment.