Many of us are familiar with Postpartum Depression. However, there are many other conditions that can arise during pregnancy or following childbirth, one of them being Postpartum Anxiety. Keep reading to learn more about what Postpartum Anxiety is and how it can be treated.
The Truth About Postpartum Depression
Ten little fingers and ten little toes. You couldn’t have imagined something so perfect. Everyone around you is so excited about your new baby and so are you! But something’s not right. You’re starting to feel off. You know you should feel happy, but you’ve been finding yourself feeling really down, could it be postpartum depression?
What is Postpartum Depression?
Having a child comes with major changes, both physically and mentally. Not only is your body adapting to the changes, your mind is also dealing with how to adjust to this new role as a parent, deal with sleep deprivation, and manage everything else that follows parenting. While it is an incredibly exciting time for many new parents, having a child can also come with unexpected stress, anxiety, and even depression.
Postpartum depression is very common, affecting over three million mothers each year. Postpartum depression usually begins within a few weeks of giving birth, and can last a year or longer. Despite many beliefs, postpartum depression does not discriminate. While there are risk factors and protective factors, postpartum depression can affect anyone.
What are the Signs of Postpartum Depression?
People experiencing postpartum depression usually experience the following:
Difficulty attaching to the baby
Increased isolation from loved ones
Changes in sleep, appetite
Loss of interest in activities
Fear, hopelessness, feelings of unworthiness
Thoughts of hurting or killing oneself and/or their baby
What is the Difference Between Postpartum Depression and the Baby Blues?
Many people are familiar with the term ‘the baby blues’. Baby blues are feelings of mild sadness, anxiety, mood swings, and feelings of being overwhelmed that accompany many new mothers, typically starting within a few days of childbirth. Unlike postpartum depression, the baby blues usually subside within one to two weeks and are far more mild than postpartum depression.
Can You Treat Postpartum Depression?
The answer is yes, postpartum depression can be managed and treated. Postpartum depression is often treated through therapy, which allows mothers a space to talk openly about their feelings and determine ways to cope with changes and feel better. Antidepressants can also be a useful tool to be used in conjunction with therapy for women experiencing postpartum depression. Lastly, maintaining strong social connections with loved ones and prioritizing rest and self-care can be deeply helpful for any new mother experiencing postpartum depression.
Postpartum depression is real, and it is a serious mental health condition. If left untreated, postpartum depression could ultimately lead to the loss of life for a new mother or her child. If you or someone you know may be experiencing postpartum depression, please reach out and get connected to someone to help support you through this time.
Watch the video below to see Chrissy Teigen and another mother opening up about their experiences with postpartum depression.
Looking back on your years growing up, what do you picture? Everyone sees something different. Some happy images of childhood innocence, for some, the picture is more bleak. What about today’s kids? In the world of advancing technology, rampant social media use, and high expectations for academic performance, how are today’s youth faring?
Helping Your Child Through Divorce
When you thought about your life, things always seemed so bright. Divorce wasn’t even a word in your vocabulary. Yet here you are...in the midst of the paperwork and the emotional agony, trying to pick up the pieces of your life. You can’t imagine how you will get by, you don’t even know how to feel. And then there’s your child...or children. You’ve heard how devastating divorce can be for kids. You never wanted them to go through this, but how can you help them?
Here are some tips to help support your child through your divorce.
Continue to spend time with them
As their parent, your children need you. Although you may want to shut away the world and just be alone following the separation, it is important to continue to show up for your children. Continue to go to their sports practices, keep on having your weekly movie nights. Whatever it is you normally do with your children, try your best to keep that up.
Remain neutral toward your ex-spouse around the children
Not all divorces end on a high note, and you may be feeling a million different negative emotions toward your former spouse. But, save the venting for a friend, family member, or therapist--not your children. When it comes to your children, remaining neutral and refraining from talking badly about your former spouse will help your child process things without any additional distress.
Talk with your child about how they’re feeling
Divorce is highly stressful and upsetting for the adults, and children tend to also hold these feelings. Moreover, many kids don’t exactly understand what this big “divorce” word means and may draw their own conclusions, whether true or off. It is important to have an honest conversation with your child about how they are feeling about these changes and address any misconceptions or fears they may have. This builds understanding and helps your children feel understood and supported.
Take time to help yourself
As a parent, you’re probably used to always putting your children first. However, it is necessary to step back and process things, see how you’re feeling, and keep up with self care. Divorce can be brutal, and in order to be fully present for your kids, you need to be taking care of yourself. Find some things that help you relax and utilize them.
For yourself and for your children. Having a neutral person to talk with is a HUGE support when going through any life change, especially something like divorce. This time will help you and/or your children process what has been going on, identify feelings, and work toward developing coping skills and supports.