When Mom is Sad Before or After Childbirth

You’re not alone. In fact, 1 of 7 of moms experience “significant” depression following childbirth, according to Postpartum Support International.

And that’s “normal” moms. Teen moms might be twice that figure; women in poverty are somewhere in between.

PSI reports that symptoms can start anytime, even during the pregnancy or up to a year after your baby is born. The organization says you can expect some of these symptoms:

  • Feelings of anger or irritability
  • Lack of interest in the baby
  • Appetite and sleep disturbance
  • Crying and sadness
  • Feelings of guilt, shame or hopelessness
  • Loss of interest, joy or pleasure in things you used to enjoy
  • Possible thoughts of harming the baby or yourself

There can be many reasons, from a history of depression to marital stress to medical issues like thyroid imbalances or diabetes.

The good news is that PSI claims that both antepartum and postpartum depressions are temporary and treatable.

Excellent resources are on the PSI site.

Mental Wellness Your Thriving Child

A quick, self scoring test about your postpartum feelings

The EPDS is a 10-question, self-administered and self-scoring tool used worldwide to help women recognize if they are suffering from postpartum depression. You can download a copy and take it to your healthcare provider, if you wish.

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