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How to cope up with Postpartum Depression?

To bring a new life to this planet takes a lot of effort. But women do it effortlessly. You haven’t seen the struggle of a new mommy. She might smile in front of everyone, but internally, she goes through a lot after giving birth. She suffers from a complex blend of physical, emotional, and behavioral changes.

Have you heard about baby blues? Most of the new moms’ experience it. It includes mood swings, crying without reason, anxiety, and trouble sleeping. But the good thing is that baby blues start within the first two to three days after giving birth and may disappear after two weeks.

Childbirth can blow up every emotion, whether it is excitement or joy, fear or anxiety. When it gets extreme, it leads to the results you have never expected- depression, or you can call it postpartum depression also.

If you want to control postpartum depression, it is essential to get educated. This article has everything you need to know about postpartum depression. So let’s jump in to understand postpartum depression.

What is Postpartum Depression?

Postpartum depression is a mental health disorder that many new mothers experience. It is not the same as baby blues. It is more sturdy and lasts longer than baby blues. Postpartum depression is a chemical, social, and psychological modification occurring in the mother’s body after having a baby. During pregnancy, the level of reproductive hormones estrogen and progesterone increases around ten times. When a woman delivers a baby, the level of these hormones drops instantly. Within three days of delivery, the mom’s hormone level reaches where it was before delivery. Along with chemical changes, social and psychological problems lead to postpartum depression.

Postpartum depression is not a topic to ignore. New moms need attention to overcome this.

What are the symptoms of Postpartum Depression?

It is ok if you are feeling moody or tired after giving birth to a baby. But let me explain to you, postpartum depression is something more than feeling grumpy or tired. Postpartum depression symptoms are intense. It can hinder your strength to care for your baby and manage regular household tasks. Let’s have a look at the symptoms of postpartum depression:

  1. A new mamma can feel low most of the time and can experience frequent mood swings.
  2. A lot of crying without any reason is a symptom of postpartum depression.
  3. It might be challenging to feel a bond with a newborn baby.
  4. A new mom might not feel like socializing with family and friends.
  5. She can overeat, or in some cases, she can lose her appetite.
  6.  Some new mommies can have insomnia, but some can sleep for longer hours.
  7. She can feel tired all day, even after resting.
  8. A new mamma can feel irritated most of the time.
  9. She might lose interest and happiness in activities that she used to enjoy earlier.
  10. Constant anxiety and panic attacks can be a symptom of postpartum depression.
  11. She might feel like harming herself or her baby.
  12. She can feel worthlessness because of the strange thoughts that are coming into her mind.
  13. She might feel that she is not a good mother.
  14. The idea of death and suicide can haunt her mind.
  15. She can have difficulty remembering things.
  16. She might feel hopeless.
  17. She can feel out of control sometimes.

Postpartum Depression treatment

If you have observed any symptoms, please talk to someone close to you. Also, visit a doctor so that you can start your postpartum depression treatment as soon as possible. Remember, postpartum depression is curable. You have to identify it on time.

There are two types of treatment for postpartum depression:

  1. Medication
  2. Therapy
  1. Medication: For treating postpartum depression, doctors use antidepressants.

What antidepressants do? Antidepressants directly affect the brain. They modify the chemicals that improve mood. But you won’t see the result instantly. It takes time to see the effect of antidepressants. It can take several weeks to see a difference in your mood.

Remember, antidepressants are not always good. People who are on antidepressants can feel some side effects also. Here is the list of side effects of antidepressants.

  1. Some people can be tired after taking antidepressants.
  2. There are chances to decrease sex drive in some people.
  3. Some people can feel dizzy.
  4. Some people can have a headache.
  5. Some can feel sleepy after taking antidepressants.

If you see any symptoms after taking antidepressants, notify your doctor immediately before your symptoms worsen.

Besides this, always tell your doctor that you are breastfeeding or not. All antidepressants are not safe if you’re breastfeeding. What happens, sometimes your estrogen levels are low. In such cases, doctors suggest hormone therapy only.

2. Therapy: Counseling can help you to overcome postpartum depression. Many psychiatrists recommend counseling for new moms. What happens in a counseling session? Most therapists use talk therapy in the counseling session to understand what things are disturbing you and affect your life negatively. The primary intention of this session is to listen to you, provide you feedback, and develop plans to cope with this. If I put it in plain words, then therapists will try to wipe out negative thoughts in your mind. Counseling sessions are productive or not; the therapist will monitor your improvements. They will adjust the further sessions also. They might ask you to do some activity at home. It is for tracking your moods and feelings.

Counseling for postpartum depression is all about present thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Also, how they are influencing your life presently.

If your postpartum depression is critical to handle, then a psychiatrist can recommend a combination of antidepressants as well as therapies.

Besides antidepressants and therapies, it is essential to make some healthy choices in your daily routine.

Can natural remedies alone help in Postpartum Depression?

The answer to this question is “NO.” Postpartum depression is something that requires the proper attention of a doctor. You cannot treat it alone with natural remedies. 

photo of woman carrying child
Photo by Taryn Elliott

Most of the natural remedies don’t have any side effects. So you can use them with medical treatment. If you are wondering what natural remedies you can use, then here is the list:

  1. Light exercises
  2.  Massage
  3. Meditation
  4.  Other mindfulness practices
  5. A balanced diets
  6. Dietary supplements

These natural remedies can assist to improve your postpartum depression if used with medical treatment.

crop person holding spoon with pistachios
Photo by Sarah Chai

Postpartum Depression is a potentially serious mental health condition that new mommies experience. If you don’t tackle it on time, it can worsen the situation. It will be difficult for you to care for the baby. You can prevent postpartum depression to some extent. Accept yourself as a new mother. And feel proud for carrying new life for nine months and bringing them on this earth. Don’t hate your body but appreciate it.

“Selfcare and proper medical attention is a way to handle postpartum depression.”

While breastfeeding your baby, it is crucial to take care of your health also. For new mamma’s, don’t forget to try andMe Post-Pregnancy Care Combo! andMe Lactation booster enhances milk quality and infant health. On the other hand, and Women’s Multivitamin takes care of a mother’s nutritional needs.

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