Postpartum Depression and support for new Moms
Battling postpartum depression and the anxiety, exhaustion, and sadness that follows can feel incredibly isolating for any new or experienced Mom. Finding support while adjusting to the new routine can be a more than lifesaver, but remember, no Mom should have to go through this alone.
Symptoms of postpartum depression
Postpartum Depression (PPD) can affect any new mom, but how do you know that what you are feeling is more than just the baby blues? Baby blues may only last a few weeks, but can include the following symptoms:
- Trouble sleeping
- Appetite Issues (eating too much or too little)
- Reduced Concentration
Postpartum Depression is more than just the adjustment period that any new Mom feels after welcoming home a new baby. This depression can be quite severe and can last for months. Symptoms include:
- Excessive crying
- Severe mood swings
- Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness
- Feelings like you can't do anything right.
Ways to cope- Social Groups, Consult the Doctor, and other tips.
If you think that you may be suffering from postpartum depression, you don't go through this alone. Humans are social creatures, and instead of closing yourself away from the depression, reaching out to others through a support network and can help any Mom navigate these emotions. Being a new mom can be full of worry and insecurity.
Try finding groups of other new moms – new moms can be found in places like the baby gym, mommy-and-me groups, or even church. Aren't quite ready to leap to socialize in-person, look to strike up connections online? Moms can find local groups through Facebook or download apps Peanuts, Mush, or Winnie. Don't be afraid to ask for help- leaning on a support system is not a sign of weakness.
If you have been struggling with the symptoms, describe above, consult with your physician right away so that a care plan can be developed. Your physician may recommend that you meet with a counselor or therapist. This healthcare professional may prescribe medication to assist you with a rough patch.
For some Mom's, they may feel going to the doctor to get medication is against their values, and they instead seek more natural alternatives to cope with postpartum depression:
- Be patient, kind, and graceful to yourself – you have done vital work creating a human. Learning how to take care of this little person does not happen overnight
- Be Positive – positive thinking can go a long away.
- Start exercising- Taking a walk with your baby can help release endorphins that can help change your mood a bit.
- Rest- The old saying is true - when the baby sleeps, you sleep. Even after, hand the baby off to Daddy or grandma so that you can get a bit of rest.
What advice would you share with other new moms experiencing postpartum depression?