Baby Blues is not the same as Postpartum Depression. Baby blues are experienced within the first 2 weeks after delivery and usually go away on their own. They are not uncommon and are due to a lack of sleep, hormone adjustments and the overwhelm that occurs with the demands of a new baby.
According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms can include but are not limited to:
- Mood swings
- Lack of concentration
- Feelings of overwhelm
- Anxiety and sadness
Postpartum depression is when the symptoms listed above continue for a longer period of time and are more severe. They can also include:
- Withdrawal from family and friend
- Inability to bond with baby
- Fears about being a mom
- Hopelessness and worthlessness
- Panic attacks
- Thoughts of harm to yourself or your baby
Postpartum Psychosis is rare and can develop within the first week after delivery with very severe symptoms such as:
- Obsessive thoughts
- Attempts to harm yourself or the baby.
When to see a Doctor:
If you or someone you know are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is always good to be evaluated by a physician. With Postpartum Psychosis, it is critical to seek help immediately, especially if the symptoms are getting worse. None of these situations should be viewed as shameful or anyone’s fault. Baby blues will typically pass within a couple of weeks but if they linger and make it difficult to care for your baby or carry out normal tasks contact your physician or someone close to you for help.
You may be at risk if:
- There is a history of depression for your or in your family
- You are bi-polar
- Have experienced Postpartum Depression before
- Your baby has special needs or there were multiple babies
- Your pregnancy was unwanted, there are financial issues or relationship issues
- You have experienced a trauma within the past year
You should feel free to contact a physician with any concerns but if you are unsure and just need someone to talk to, Birth Choice is always here to help.
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