Commonly known as baby blues, Postpartum Depression hits some mother’s post childbirth pretty hard. The condition is also known as postnatal depression and is caused by the sudden lapse of hormones, such as estrogen and progesterone along with various hormones produced by the thyroid gland. Production of these hormones generally plummets after childbirth. Add sleep deprivation, hormonal shifts and anxiety and feeling of loss of control over one’s life; and you have a recipe for disaster.
In order to have a better understanding of postpartum depression, you should know what to expect in post birth and how to assist your spouse with this type of depression, the symptoms of postpartum depression are the following:
Inability to bond with baby
One of the most common symptoms of postpartum depression in women is the inability to bond with the baby. This could be both, physical and emotional. While some women experience lack of connection with their newborn and have to ask for their partner’s assistance or the hospital staff, others may find it difficult to hold and nurse the baby themselves at all.
If you have forgotten all about PMS during pregnancy, you are in for a huge surprise after you deliver the baby for the postpartum symptoms, which includes excessive crying on top of the list. The feelings of guilt due to not being able to care for your child, the inability to help the baby latch on to you for a few days, or simply a colic child can induce the feeling of inadequacy, which are too common during the phase of postpartum depression.
Loss of Energy
Not only do new mothers face a drastic shift in their energy levels, but they also experience severe drops in appetite as well as overwhelming fatigue most of the time. Mothers experiencing these symptoms should consult their medical practitioners for treatment.
Postpartum depression is obviously heightened if the mother is having suicidal thoughts or thoughts to cause physical harm to herself and (or) the baby. Usually, these symptoms occur in cases of acute depression. Anxiety and panic attacks are also common symptoms of postpartum depression.
It is one thing being annoyed the morning after your baby had kept you up wailing all night, and it is an entirely different thing to be irritated at everything and every person around. Symptoms of postpartum depression include constant irritability and expressed thoughts about not being a good mother, or feeling unworthy of the bundle of joy.
Shift in Sleeping Patterns
Either the patient suffering from postpartum depression would face severe insomnia or would be sleeping too much. In either case, the symptom needs to be monitored for whether it is only the postpartum fatigue or postpartum depression (postpartum depression would be paired with various other symptoms of postnatal depression along with disturbed sleep patterns).
Reduced Interest in general Activities
Some postnatal depression patients report a sudden loss in interests and activities which they used to enjoy a lot. Many people lose interest in their jobs and quit considering it as a general aftermath of giving birth, but that’s not it. Also, many postpartum depression victims show symptoms of diminished thinking ability or lack of concentration on general matters.
Though it is often a difficult battle, overcoming postpartum depression is not impossible. It is critical that you seek help for it immediately, ensuring that you would be, in time, able to take the best care of your baby. Prolonged postpartum depression is detrimental to mental health in the long run and may heighten the risk of the problem recurring after future pregnancies.