Postnatal Depression

During pregnancy, you tend to focus on the growth of your baby and the impending birth rather than something like postnatal depression. There is something really important that you need to start thinking about in terms of what you can do and who you can draw on for support after you’ve had your beautiful baby.

Unfortunately, about one in seven new mothers experience postpartum or postnatal depression after giving birth. That’s quite significant, and it does not even include unreported cases. It can be quite difficult to believe that you could be one of them, especially when all you can think about now is how wonderful it would be for a new baby. No one can predict what major changes you may go through after birth, how you will feel about yourself, your baby, your relationship or the support you get.

Many women experience a “high” which can result in postnatal depression after giving birth. In forty percent of these women, this “high” results in varying degrees of postpartum depression or “blues.” In most cases, this might manifest by crying for no apparent reason in the first 3-7 days.

For some women, it can lead to more serious and deeper feelings of anxiety or depression shutterstock_140642560lasting two weeks or more. If this happens, it is advisable to seek professional help and a referral from your GP.

Helpful Tips: It can be useful to find out the causes of postnatal depression

There are physical, social and psychological changes following the birth to consider. For example, the dramatic hormonal changes which follow giving birth.  There is physical discomfort after birth, for example, an episiotomy, “afterbirth” pains caused by contractions of the uterus, breast engorgement, lack of sleep.

If there is a separation in the early days you may not bond with the baby for medical reasons. There may be difficulty in coping with all the new responsibilities of motherhood.

Find postnatal depression support groups here

Author: Asian Mums Network guest writer


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About the author: AMN