Pregnancy and childbirth can be one of life’s most stressful and exciting events. The time after birth and adjusting to parenthood can be just as challenging. Mothers may experience many physical and emotional changes and some may be very confusing and perhaps frightening. Depression and anxiety around childbirth can affect any childbearing woman-regardless of race, income, culture, age, education, breastfeeding or bottle feeding. Even if your relationship is happy and you’ve had previous babies, postpartum depression can occur with any baby.
Postpartum depression can emerge any time during the first postpartum year. Most often symptoms include unexpected crying and tearfulness, mild anxiety, restlessness, fatigue and mood changes; worrying excessively about your health or feeling overly concerned about your baby’s health; feeling panicky, “out of control,” or anxious; having difficulty sleeping or being very fatigued and sleeping too much; having marked changes in your appetite; or not feeling close to your baby. If you notice that you, or someone you know is feeling worse as time goes on, it’s important for you to let someone know how you are feeling. Do not let feelings of guilt, shame or embarrassment get in the way of doing what you need to do to feel better. PPSC offers screening, treatment and referral for Perinatal Mood Disorder.