Postpartum Depression In Philadelphia

Postpartum depression in Philadelphia, or PPD is a  common problem facing new moms in Philadelphia that should not be ignored.

Somehow women have learned to expect  that the birth of a baby automatically brings exhilaration and joy. Well, not  so for many women who feel fine the week after giving birth, but soon after  become overwhelmed by feelings of despair and desperation.

PPD is a potentially serious illness  that affects about one in 10 women.

To determine if you are  most likely experiencing typical baby blues or something more serious like  postpartum depression Take the quiz

Frequently, the warning signs of PPD go  unrecognized and untreated because many women believe they are part of caring  for a new baby. Characterized by mild anxiety, withdrawal, tearfulness,  fatigue, sleep disturbances and mood swings, postpartum blues or “baby blues” are normal reactions that many mothers experience following childbirth. The  onset of postpartum blues usually occurs three to five days after delivery, and  should subside as hormonal levels begin to stabilize. Symptoms generally do not  last for more than a few weeks.

A woman should not feel ashamed to seek  help if she feels she might be experiencing a mood disorder, either during  pregnancy or in the weeks and months following delivery. Women have been led to  believe that it is supposed to be the happiest time in their life, but as many  as four out of five women who give birth will experience some change in their  mental health in the early weeks following the birth of their baby.

Some women keep their symptoms secret  because they are embarrassed, ashamed, or guilty about feeling depressed when  they are supposed to be happy, or because they worry others will view them as an  unfit parent. But, with proper diagnosis and treatment, mom and baby don’t  have to suffer.

Speaking with a professional – a  therapist, psychologist, or social worker – to learn how to cope with  postpartum changes and reduce depressive symptoms is a good idea. Support  groups and phone support also may be effective. Antidepressant medications may  be used independently or in combination with talk therapy to relieve the  symptoms of postpartum depression.

To help in recovery, the woman should  make sure to get as much rest as possible; only do as much as she can and ask  for help when needed; talk to her husband, partner, family and friends about how  she is feeling; join a support group, and don’t make any major life changes  during pregnancy. If left untreated, PPD not only hurts the mother, but also  affects the family. It can affect a mother’s ability to parent and her  relationship with her partner, both emotionally and sexually. She may lose  confidence in herself as a mother, which can worsen the depression.

If you or someone you know is  experiencing symptoms of PPD, help is only a phone call away.