Postpartum depression can be understood as a complex mix of emotional, physical, and behavioral changes that occur in women after giving birth. It is a significant form of depression that sets in within the first four weeks after giving birth.
Its diagnosis is based on its severity and the length of time between delivery and its onset. If you are about to give birth or you recently had a baby, this is an issue that you should prepare for. You can talk to your Manassas OB/GYN about it for you to learn how you can deal with it. Below are some essential things you should understand about postpartum depression.
Symptoms of Postpartum Depression
Postpartum depression is associated with many symptoms. Some of the most common ones include excessive fatigue, appetite changes, decreased libido, difficulty sleeping, and frequent mood changes, among others.
Although these symptoms are a regular occurrence after delivery, they may be accompanied by symptoms of major depression, including loss of pleasure, hopelessness, feelings of worthlessness, and thoughts of suicide or death. These symptoms indicate that something is wrong, and therefore, you must seek help. The good news is that if you have a good OB/GYN, they can refer you to the right programs that can help you to get relief.
Risk Factors of Postpartum Depression
Several factors have the potential to increase a woman’s risk of developing postpartum depression. Some of them include:
- History of depression during or before pregnancy
- History of premenstrual dysphoric disorder
- Age of the mother: The younger a woman is when getting pregnant, the more likely they are to suffer postpartum depression
- Lack of social support
- Marital conflict
If you are exposed to any of these risk factors, you must ask your OB/GYN to help you on how you can prepare to tackle postpartum depression.
Tips for Coping After Delivery
Bringing home a newborn comes with new responsibilities, and therefore, can initially be quite stressful. Some of the tips that you can count on to adjust and ease the pressure include:
- Asking for help from other people
- Building realistic expectations for your baby and yourself
- Expect and prepare for good and bad days
- Foster a good relationship with your partner
- Limit visitors at first
- Screen phone calls
- Eat a sensible diet and avoid caffeine and alcohol
- Rest or sleep when your baby sleeps
- Exercise within limits set by your OB/GYN
- Avoid isolation by keeping in touch with close friends and family
The Bottom Line
Overall, it is apparent that the risk of developing postpartum depression during the first month after delivery stares at millions of women around the world. The good news is that through proper preparation and adequate support, this is an issue that can be prevented.
It can also be treated through psychotherapy and antidepressant medications, among other solutions. If you are looking for a reliable women’s healthcare provider who can help you with dealing with postpartum depression, Capital Women Care is an excellent facility to consider. Contact them today for more information.