Postpartum depression

A type of clinical depression that occurs after childbirth

Symptoms of Postpartum depression

The following features are indicative of Postpartum depression:
  • mood swings
  • anxiety
  • sadness
  • irritability
  • feeling overwhelmed
  • crying
  • reduced concentration
  • appetite problems
  • trouble sleeping
  • fear that you are not a good mother
  • difficulty bonding with your baby
It is possible that Postpartum depression shows no physical symptoms and still is present in a patient.

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Common Causes of Postpartum depression

The following are the most common causes of Postpartum depression:
  • emotional issues
  • physical changes

Risk Factors for Postpartum depression

The following factors may increase the likelihood of Postpartum depression:
  • patient with history of depression, bipolar disorder, mood stability problems, stressful events
  • difficulty breastfeeding
  • problems in relationship with spouse
  • weak support system
  • financial problems
  • unplanned or unwanted pregnancy

Prevention of Postpartum depression

Yes, it may be possible to prevent Postpartum depression. Prevention may be possible by doing the following:
  • good social support from family, friends and coworkers helps in lowering the postpartum depression
  • doing talk therapy helps in preventing depression
  • using depression-screening questionnaire during your pregnancy and after delivery monitors the signs and symptoms of depression

Occurrence of Postpartum depression

Number of Cases

The following are the number of Postpartum depression cases seen each year worldwide:
  • Very common > 10 Million cases

Common Age Group

Postpartum depression most commonly occurs in the following age group:
  • Aged between 15-60 years

Common Gender

Postpartum depression can occur in any gender.

Lab Tests and Procedures for Diagnosis of Postpartum depression

The following lab tests and procedures are used to detect Postpartum depression:
  • Blood tests: To determine the medical causes of depression
  • Depression-screening questionnaire: To evaluate the mental conditions and diagnose the postpartum depression

Doctor for Diagnosis of Postpartum depression

Patients should visit the following specialists if they have symptoms of Postpartum depression:
  • Psychiatrist

Complications of Postpartum depression if untreated

Yes, Postpartum depression causes complications if it is not treated. Below is the list of complications and problems that may arise if Postpartum depression is left untreated:
  • chronic depressive disorder
  • emotional and behavioral problems for childrens

Procedures for Treatment of Postpartum depression

The following procedures are used to treat Postpartum depression:
  • Psychotherapy: Helps in finding the better ways to cope with your feelings and solve problems
  • Electroconvulsive therapy: Lowers the symptoms of psychosis and depression

Self-care for Postpartum depression

The following self-care actions or lifestyle changes may help in the treatment or management of Postpartum depression:
  • Make healthy lifestyle choices: Helps in recovering the disease
  • Make time for yourself: Helps in relieving the depression
  • Avoid isolation: Breaking the isolation may help you feel human again

Alternative Medicine for Treatment of Postpartum depression

The following alternate medicine and therapies are known to help in the treatment or management of Postpartum depression:
  • Regular physical therapy: Exercise helps in relieving the postpartum depressive symptoms
  • Practicing acupuncture and massage therapies: Helps in lowering the depressive symptoms

Patient Support for Treatment of Postpartum depression

The following actions may help Postpartum depression patients:
  • Join support groups: Helps in coping with postpartum depression

Time for Treatment of Postpartum depression

While time-period of treatment for each patient may vary, below is the typical time-period for Postpartum depression to resolve if treated properly under an expert supervision:
  • More than 1 year

Related Topics

Last updated date

This page was last updated on 2/04/2019.
This page provides information for Postpartum depression.

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