The meaning of postpartum is the time after childbirth. Postpartum depression (also known as “baby blues”) is the feeling of emptiness or sadness within a few days of delivery.
Your mind and body go through lots of changes during and after pregnancy. If you feel emotionless, sad, or empty most, or all of the time for a prolonged period (probably more than 2 weeks) during or after pregnancy, you should reach out for help immediately. If you feel like you don’t care for your baby after delivery, you might have postpartum depression.
Postpartum depression is a serious mental illness affecting the brain, physical health, and behaviour. If you are depressed, empty, sad, or flat, feelings will not go away and can hinder your everyday life. You might feel detached from your baby, as if you are not the baby’s mother, or you might not love the baby.
These feelings might initially be mild, but they can become severe. Medicine or therapy works just fine to treat postpartum depression. It will also assist the mother and baby become healthy.
In contrast to the use of medicine or therapy to treat postpartum depression, there are some hidden truths behind this depression that you should know about. The principal truth is that fathers and mothers are mostly ill-prepared for the reality of childbirth and pregnancy.
The hidden truths
After giving birth to your child, you may not even recognise you have depression. In fact, women, in general, mothers don’t usually realise that their feelings are serious and sometimes life-threatening. Below are some hidden truths about postpartum depression;
- Fathers and adoptive parents also have postpartum depression
- Depression or anxiety will occur in one out of five new mothers
- Women who are at high risk of having postpartum depression are:
- Those with family or personal history of depression
- Latina and African-American women
- Those with babies in the newborn intensive care unit
- Those who had medical complications before or after giving birth
Furthermore, other things you should know about postpartum depression are;
Women with postpartum depression do not at all times look depressed
The feelings of new mothers with postpartum depression are usually hidden. What they all say is they are “fine”. This is probably because they don’t want to trouble anybody or be judged by anyone. They hope things will get better on their own and act strong for everybody.
The cause of sleep problems may not be the baby
Though newborn babies wake up hungry every couple hours, this may interfere with the mother’s sleep. However, anxiety may also prevent the mother from sleeping. It can leave the mother feeling sad, frustrated, and angry.
Medication is not the only answer
Several effective treatments exist for depression and anxiety before, during, and after pregnancy. Even though medications such as antidepressants can help mothers with postpartum depression in some cases. But mothers often benefit from talk therapy like interpersonal psychotherapy or cognitive behavioural therapy alone without any medications.
Need help with postpartum depression? Go to Doctall to see a Doctor or Specialist.