The Symptoms of Postpartum Depression: What Is It?
Symptoms of postpartum depression (PPD) include a variety of physical, emotional, and behavioral changes in some women following childbirth. Within four weeks of childbirth, the DSM-5, a manual used to diagnose mental disorders, defines PPD as an acute form of major depression. Postpartum depression is diagnosed based on the severity of the depression as well as how long it has lasted since delivery.
To understand postpartum depression, it is necessary to understand the chemical, social, and psychological changes that occur when a woman gives birth. The term refers to a variety of physical and emotional changes that many new mothers experience. Medications and counseling can be used to treat PPD.
After childbirth, hormone levels begin to fall rapidly. There’s no conclusive evidence that this decline contributes to depression. Pregnancy raises levels of estrogen and progesterone, the female reproductive hormones, by 10 times. After that, they begin to decline rapidly. The levels of these hormones return to pre-pregnancy levels within three days of childbirth.
It’s also possible to develop depression due to the social and psychological changes that accompany having a child.
Postpartum depression is a common occurrence for new mothers. Women who have given birth to a child are more likely to suffer from a more severe and long-lasting form of postpartum depression. It is estimated that one in a thousand women will suffer from postpartum psychosis.
Signs and Symptoms of Postpartum Depression.
When it comes to postpartum depression, the symptoms can be difficult to spot. Following childbirth, many women experience the following symptoms:
- Inability to fall asleep
- Food habits change
- Severe fatigue
- Lower libido
- Mood swings on a regular basis.
When you have Postpartum Depression, you may also experience other signs and symptoms of major depression that aren’t typical after childbirth, such as:
Feeling disinterested in your baby or a lack of connection with the baby.
Constantly crying, often for no apparent reason.
- depressed mood
- Extreme rage and irritability
- A sense of worthlessness, hopelessness, and helplessness
- Suicidal or homicidal thoughts
- Thoughts of harming another person
- Inability to focus or make decisions
Hacey provides support for women, especially those who are expecting or nursing a baby. Our work in maternal health, has enabled us assist numerous women. Visit the website at hacey.org for more details.