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Postpartum Depression

Postpartum depression can begin any time after delivery and last up to a year. Caring for the newborn is stressful and it is common for mothers to feel over anxious, tensed and exhausted. But, if a mother feels less motivated to care for the child, loses appetite and concentration that persists for many days, she needs help. Medical examination of these changes in attitude is undertaken to determine if she is going through postpartum depression. If the symptoms persist for more than two weeks after childbirth, it is recognized as postpartum depression.


Check for following symptoms:


  • Sadness
  • Inability to sleep
  • Loss of appetite, weight loss
  • Loss of energy or motivation
  • Feeling worthless or guilty.
  • Lack of interest
  • Wanting to cry
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Feeling restless or irritable.
  • Thoughts or ideas about suicide.
  • Worrying about hurting the newborn.
  • Having headaches, chest pains, heart palpitations and hyperventilation.

Causes of postpartum depression

While research activities continue to evaluate the exact reasons for postpartum depression, it is commonly associated with changes in body, mind and lifestyle adjustments.

Physical changes


  • Levels of hormones estrogen and progesterone drop sharply just after childbirth and can trigger depression.
  • Hormones produced by thyroid gland may drop rapidly, resulting in fatigue, sluggish feeling and depression.
  • Changes in body metabolism, blood pressure, amount of blood in body, after childbirth does negatively affect mental state of woman.

Emotional reasons


  • An unsatisfied birth experience like spouse not present during child delivery
  • Medical complications that make it difficult to care for baby
  • Anxiety to be a super mother
  • A sense of losing body image
  • Unable to accept responsibilities of motherhood.

Lifestyle Adjustments


  • Meeting requirements for newborn including the financial aspect
  • Absence of support from spouse, family resulting in self-reliance
  • Having very less free time and broken sleep patterns
  • Body pain or delivery complications that restrict movements
  • Problems with breast-feeding
  • Modifications in sexual relationship with partner.

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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: December 12, 2017