Having a baby signals a period of joy and excitement for a couple and especially for a mother. However as much as she may love her new child, the physical and emotional stress of the caring for the new member in your life can lead to postpartum depression in women.
From unstable sleep patterns to massive hormonal changes after birth, “baby blues” can lead to a number of changes in a woman’s life. Sudden bouts of irritability and moodiness, insomnia, exhaustion and sadness can all signal the presence of the depression in a new mom.
The women are left feeling overwhelmed at the prospect of caring for a child and an inability to do so can lead to feelings of guilt and worthlessness.
While simple instance of “baby blues” affects a majority of woman, in certain cases this may condition may become severe. Though rare, this extreme case of postpartum depression is termed as postpartum psychosis. Women suffering from this condition will display symptoms like hallucinations and delusional thinking.
This may be coupled with feelings of detachment or a loss of interest in the newborn. Women suffering from postpartum psychosis may have intermittent thoughts of suicide or even try to hurt the child.
Treating Severe Postpartum Depression:
In such a case it is imperative that the treatment for the depression must be started at the earliest. These treatment measures will not only help the mother recover quickly but also save the baby from the possible impacts of severe postpartum depression, which in certain cases can even be fatal. Professional intervention in the form of counseling, support groups and antidepressants is required to counter the problem.
One of the best ways to treat severe postpartum depression is through psychotherapy. Talking to a mental health professional or a social worker in the related field can help more than anything. Talk about changes that have been adversely affecting you after the birth of your child.
This may also help you in charting out a new course in your life, setting realistic goals and solving your problems. Doctors have found interpersonal therapy a great measure for treating the problem.
When the mother is found to be incapable of caring for the child and herself, the doctors may prescribe certain antidepressants, mood stabilizers or want to implement the estrogen replacement therapy to help the woman. In extreme cases electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is used for treating the extreme depression.
While these treatment options may help you, you can also try making some lifestyle modifications post the birth of your child. This includes implementing healthy routines in your lifestyle like exercising, walking and eating healthy.
Do not stress yourself too much by making demands on yourself which you will not be able to meet. Talk to family and gather a support group that can help you survive the tough time after the baby is born.