Motherhood has its own challenges, and when depression occurs during or following pregnancy, it can be difficult for a woman and her family. Pregnancy-related depression can happen during pregnancy or within a year after delivering a baby. It is not your fault. You can overcome depression and enjoy your life once again by reaching out for help.
Most of us feel sad, blue, unhappy, or down in the dumps sometimes. Clinical depression is different; it is a medical condition. Clinical depression occurs when feelings of sadness, loss, anger, or frustration interfere with everyday life.
Some people describe it as a constant feeling of hopelessness. Others say it's like a dark cloud that surrounds them and separates them from others. Some women say they have fatigue that makes even the smallest task seem overwhelming and impossible.
Pregnancy-related depression can happen during pregnancy or within a year after delivering a baby. The good news is that depression can be treated and you can be happy again.
After pregnancy, signs of depression may also include being afraid of hurting your baby or yourself, or not having any interest in your baby. Seek help from your health care provider if any of these symptoms last for more than two weeks.
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If you have some symptoms, don't panic. Remember, depression is treatable and it can happen to anyone. It does not mean you are a bad mother.
Talk to someone. Some women don't tell anyone about their symptoms because they feel embarrassed, ashamed, or guilty. They worry that they will be viewed as an unfit parent. But to get well, you must seek help.
Talk to your health care provider and let him or her know how you are feeling. Most likely, one or both of these treatments will be recommended:
Some pregnant women are concerned that taking medicine may harm the baby. A mother's depression can also affect her baby's development, so getting treatment is important for both mother and baby. The risks of taking medicine have to be weighed against the risks of depression. That's why it is important for you to discuss the decision with your health care provider
You're not alone. Here are some proven strategies for dealing with the challenges of motherhood:
Information for Families and Friends
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