Symptoms of Post-partum Depression
A new life is a wonderful gift, and new mothers often have many new responsibilities that go along with that gift. On top of that, a woman’s hormones are rapidly adjusting after giving birth. Along with sleepless nights and the stress of supporting a small infant, many moms feel the “baby blues” in the weeks, months and year after they have a child.
But when are the normal blues and those long nights a more serious problem? It is important to know the symptoms of post-partum depression and be aware that there are wonderful new treatments that can help treat those symptoms quickly and effectively.
Signs of the Baby Blues
The “baby blues” are a normal experience that many new mothers share. These symptoms only last a few weeks or even just a few days. If these symptoms last longer than three weeks, it may be an indication that something more serious is going on. If you have the baby blues, you might be feeling short-term symptoms such as the following:
- Problems concentrating
- Irritability and mood swings
- Mild sadness and mild anxiety
- Trouble sleeping that is most likely due to the baby’s sleep schedule
With the normal baby blues, these symptoms should not interfere with the mother’s ability to bond with her child over time. These symptoms should not make the mother feel suicidal or unable to function.
The baby blues often happen because the mother’s body is adjusting after the birth of the child. Hormonal and physical changes may cause temporary changes in nutrient absorption, hormone levels and sleep levels. With the baby blues, these symptoms should fade in a few weeks.
Signs of Postpartum Depression
Postpartum depression lasts longer and feels more intense than the baby blues. Postpartum depression does not mean that the mother is a bad person. Many wonderful mothers struggle with this natural phenomenon. Symptoms may include the following:
- Inability to care for or bond with the baby
- Loss of appetite
- Inability to become fully awake: feeling exhausted all of the time
- Feeling sad most or all of the time
- Withdrawing from loved ones
- Thoughts of suicide or of harming yourself or the baby
- Intense mood swings or bouts of anger
- Substance abuse, drug use, or alcohol abuse in order to self-medicate these symptoms
It is very important to see a doctor as soon as possible if you feel these symptoms. Please remember that postpartum depression can happen to anyone. It is not your fault, and it does not mean that you are a bad mother. If you need help for postpartum depression, call us now.
If you begin to feel paranoid, or if you experience hallucinations, confusion or dangerous impulses to hurt yourself or your baby, you may be experiencing postpartum psychosis. This is a highly dangerous condition. If you feel these symptoms, call your doctor or call us now.
Help for Post-Partum Depression
You don’t have to suffer alone. Our counselors understand and we can help you. If you are struggling with post-partum depression, call us now. We can put you in touch with the best treatment available at our 24 hour, toll-free helpline. We can help you find resources for you and your family. We can even help you work with your insurance company to make sure you have insurance coverage for post-partum depression treatment.