Clarinda Brandão, RP
It’s Called Post Partum Depression: Part 1
No one expects it. No one ever says, “I’ll have post partum depression”. But it happens. It creeps up when you least expect it and it can be hard.
Women don’t anticipate going through post partum depression since they’re told that being a mom will be the happiest moment in their lives. Though this is true, it is also the most terrifying moment in their life. You will love your baby more than you have ever thought you could love another human being and yet at the same time it will surprise you how something you love more than you can image can also bring anger and frustration to a new level; the sound of a crying baby that is not hungry or wet can destroy your self-esteem in minutes; the lack of sleep night after night can make you feel like you’re going crazy; a hug from your husband can frustrate you when you are craving 5 minutes for yourself; a baby who refuses to latch or breastfeed can make you feel rejected and not wanted.It’s all real. It’s all part of being a mother… the good and the bad.
Some women will identify the signs of post partum depression instantly, others will feel it gradually and others will suffer in silence and try to ignore those ‘yucky’ feelings in hopes they’ll just go away once and for all.
It’s important to understand that there are the “Baby Blues”, which is different than Post Partum Depression (PPD). Baby Blues occur usually within the first couple of weeks. Some moms experience mood swings, insomnia and overwhelming feelings. The Baby Blues is temporary (it doesn’t last). Where as, PPD, is long-lasting without treatment.
Post Partum Depression (PPD) can happen for many reasons; our own feelings around being a mother; our parent’s influences in our childhood; hormone changes; difficulty adjusting to the new change in our life; previous experience with depression or postpartum depression; history of depression in the family; poor support from your partner, friends, or family; have a sick or colicky baby; have a lot of other stress in your life.
Mothers who have stillbirths or miscarriages have a much higher chance of suffering from PPD. The normal grieving of loss is made worse by the shifting hormones.PPD makes it hard for you to function well, including caring for and bonding with your baby. Babies of depressed mothers tend to be not as attached to their mothers and to be slower in behavior, language, and mental development.
Getting treatment early is important for both you and your baby. The earlier you are treated, the more quickly you will recover, the less your chances of repeat depression, and the less your baby's development will be affected by your condition.
Some Signs of Post Partum Depression:
Feelings of severe sadness, emptiness, emotional numbness, or frequent crying. Some women also may feel anxious.
A tendency to withdraw from relationships with family, friends, or from activities that are usually pleasurable for the PPD sufferer.
Constant tiredness, trouble sleeping, overeating, or loss of appetite.
Not able to concentrate or focus.Intense concern and anxiety about the baby or a lack of interest in the baby.
Thoughts about suicide or fears of harming the baby.