Bringing home baby for the first time is such an exciting time, but also stressful! I remember being so happy, yet scared out of my mind that I would do something wrong. For some moms, this life-changing event is just too overwhelming and can cause emotional distress. It's normal to feel some anxiety, but when you feel like it's too much, you may be suffering from a postpartum disorder. There are 3 different categories of postpartum disorders, including postpartum blues, postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis. It is important to recognize the symptoms and find a psychiatrist who can further help you treat the issues.
Postpartum blues is the most mild form and experience in up to 85% of women, so this is very common! This usually peaks around the 4th day after pregnancy and lasts no longer than 2 weeks. I am pretty sure this is what I experienced since I was so anxious and a bit down on myself, but it subsided once I was a bit more comfortable and confident.
Postpartum depression (PPD) lasts a bit longer and emerges within the first 3-4 months after having a baby and is a major form of depression. There are several symptoms of postpartum depression including: depressed or sad mood, suicidal thoughts, change in appetite and poor concentration. The more severe form, Postpartum psychosis, occurs in only 1-2 women out of 1,000. The symptoms appear within 48-72 hours after having a baby and the symptoms relate to those of bipolar disorder. Women experience postpartum psychosis can experience rapid mood changes, auditory hallucinations, delusions and more.
Do you or someone you know show any of the symptoms for PPD or postpartum psychosis? If so, it is important to consult your doctor immediately. There honestly is no need to suffer and they can help you feel like your old self again. It's amazing what psychiatrists can do these days with treatment and I highly recommend seeing one, especially if you are having suicidal thoughts and/or feel like you could harm others. We all want our babies to be healthy when born, but it is also important for Mamas to be healthy, too. It's easy to put yourself second as a parent, but, in this case, you need to come first for your own sake and your baby's.