How to Overcome Postpartum Depression? (2023 Updated)
Postpartum depression is a common and serious condition that can affect new mothers after giving birth. Symptoms can include feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and a lack of energy. If you’re struggling with postpartum depression, know that you’re not alone and that there are ways to get help. Here are some steps how to overcome postpartum depression. By following these steps, you can take control of your postpartum depression and find the help and support you need to overcome it.
- Seek professional help: Talk to your healthcare provider or a mental health professional about your feelings and get a proper diagnosis. They can recommend treatment options, such as therapy or medication.
- Build a support network: Surround yourself with people who can provide emotional support and practical help, such as a partner, family members, or friends. Consider joining a support group for new mothers experiencing postpartum depression.
- Take care of yourself: Make time for self-care, such as getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, and exercising regularly. These activities can help boost your mood and energy levels.
- Find healthy ways to cope: Try to find healthy ways to cope with stress and negative emotions, such as talking to a trusted friend or family member, practicing relaxation techniques, or writing in a journal.
- Overcoming Postpartum Depression: Tips and Strategies
- What is the Difference Between Motherhood Sadness and Postpartum Depression?
- What Causes Postpartum Depression? What are the Risk Factors?
- How Is Postpartum Depression Treated?
- How Do I Overcome Postpartum Depression?
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for How to Overcome Postpartum Depression?
Overcoming Postpartum Depression: Tips and Strategies
Becoming a parent can be a joyous and exciting time, but it can also be a time of great stress and adjustment. For some new mothers, the challenges of pregnancy and childbirth can lead to the development of postpartum depression, a serious and potentially debilitating mood disorder. If you are struggling with postpartum depression, it is important to know that you are not alone, and that there are effective treatment options available. Here are some tips and strategies for overcoming postpartum depression.
Postpartum depression is a mood disorder with symptoms of major depression that appear within four weeks of birth.
Symptoms include depressed mood, loss of interest in and enjoyment of life, eating disorders and weight changes, sleep disturbances, slowed movement, low energy, feelings of worthlessness and/or guilt, an inability to focus, and suicidal/death thoughts. The diagnosis is made when these symptoms last for at least two weeks. It is often accompanied by an anxiety disorder. (American Psychiatrics Association, 2013; Patel, Bailey, Jabeen, Ali, Barker & Osiezagha, 2012)
Seek Professional Help
The first and most important step in overcoming postpartum depression is to seek professional help. Postpartum depression is a serious and potentially debilitating condition, and it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible. Treatment options for postpartum depression may include psychotherapy, medication, and supportive care. It is important to work with a mental health professional who is experienced in treating postpartum depression, and to follow their recommended treatment plan.
Dealing with postpartum depression can be isolating, and it is important to have a supportive network of friends and family. Joining a support group for new mothers can be a helpful way to connect with others who are experiencing similar challenges, and to receive emotional support. It is also important to communicate with your partner and other family members about your feelings, and to ask for their help and support.
Taking care of oneself is an important part of managing postpartum depression. This may include getting enough rest, eating a healthy diet, and participating in activities that bring joy and relaxation. It can also be helpful to set aside time for self-care practices such as meditation, yoga, or massage. Remember to be gentle with yourself, and to ask for help when needed.
Stress can exacerbate symptoms of postpartum depression, and it is important to find ways to manage stress. This may include setting boundaries, delegating tasks, and finding healthy ways to cope with stress such as exercise or relaxation techniques. It can also be helpful to seek additional support from a therapist or counselor.
What is the Difference Between Motherhood Sadness and Postpartum Depression?
Many mothers go through periods of sadness or tiredness, changes in their weight, and changes in their sleep patterns after giving birth. This situation, which is usually observed during the first two weeks after birth and then resolved, is called “maternal sadness.” (Patel, Bailey, Jabeen, Ali, Barker & Osiezagha, 2012)
This is a time when the mother cries for no apparent reason, has extreme emotional outbursts, and is caused by the pressure or anxiety of her new social role, as well as hormonal changes.
In maternity sadness, mothers experience the situations I mentioned above, but they do not have suicidal thoughts and can care for their babies even if they have difficulties.
For example, if we look at the sleep pattern, we see that the mother can sleep when her baby sleeps, although she has sleep disorders during pregnancy.
In Postpartum Depression, however, the mother cannot care for the baby, so that she does not even want to be with the baby and feels guilty about it. Above all, thoughts of death predominate, as in major depression.
It is important not to confuse the difficulties and emotional changes of the postpartum transition period with postpartum depression. Transition is tough, but it doesn’t always mean you’re depressed.
What Causes Postpartum Depression? What are the Risk Factors?
- Births before the age of 20
- Substance use
- Family history of mental illness
- Stressful situation during pregnancy
- Marital problems
- Poor social support
- Unplanned pregnancy
- Low history
- Poor relationship with mother’s own mother
- Low income
- Difficult birth
- Hormonal changes
- Care stress of newborn baby
- The role change
- The stress of not getting milk*
- (Patel, Bailey, Jabeen, Ali, Barker & Osiezagha, 2012; Friedman & Resnick, 2009)
- *(Borra, Iacovou & Sevilla, 2014)
How Is Postpartum Depression Treated?
Early diagnosis and treatment of Postpartum Depression (DSD) is very important because it affects both the mother-infant relationship and the risk of depression and anxiety (anxiety disorder) in the baby’s future life.
If the process proceeds without support and awareness, Postpartum Depression also has a negative and damaging effect on the mother and partner’s relationship. (Magistris, Carta & Fanos, 2013)
The treatment of DSD, like other types of depression, includes drug therapy, therapy, concomitant therapy, or alternative secondary treatments. (Patel, Bailey, Jabeen, Ali, Barker & Osiezagha, 2012)
Your doctor will tell you if drug treatment is necessary, but it should be noted that successful recovery was seen in mothers who did not prefer drug treatment because they were breastfeeding, but only received therapy.
Especially Interpersonal Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy are very effective on DSD. Couple therapy will also be beneficial for the coping process. Exercise, acupuncture, massage and sunlight exposure (light therapy) are recommended as secondary treatments.
How Do I Overcome Postpartum Depression?
Many studies have found that one of the most important factors in coping with Postpartum Depression is social support. (Milgrom, Hirshler, Reece, Holt & Alan W. Gemmill, 2019) So much so that the social support network around the mother has a preventive effect on DSD.
Social support is a protective factor for the mother.
When social support is provided, both the physical health of the mother and the baby and the psychological well-being of the mother are positively affected. It is claimed that even the birth of mothers who receive social support from their environment during pregnancy is easier. (Collins, Dunkel-Schetter, Lobel & Scrimshaw, 1993)
Value Assurance and Trusted Alliance are the two most important elements of social support in coping with Postpartum Depression.
In a study published by Milgrom and colleagues in 2019, the importance of these two elements of social support in coping with PSD was revealed.
“Value Assurance” is the recognition and appreciation of the mother’s talents and skills. Considering the difficulties of the transition period to motherhood, the recognition of the mother’s skills and the recognition of this by the mother has a positive effect.
“Reliable Alliance” is the belief and trust that someone will be there for the mother in a difficult situation. The practical support of the social network during babysitting is also an indicator of having a reliable alliance. These two components are of great importance in coping with postpartum depression and anxiety.
The most vital period of social support is the last 3 months of pregnancy and the first 6 months after birth.
Considering all these, we see that DSD is actually a mood disorder that can be treated and overcome with different components such as medication, therapy, accompanying therapy, exercise, acupuncture, massage, sunlight (light therapy), and social support. The important thing here is to be diagnosed in time.
It may not be easy to raise your voice and express your despair, reluctance, anxiety, and unhappiness when everyone thinks you should be the happiest.
But as soon as you gather your strength and seek help, you’ll find that postpartum depression is a manageable and survivable disorder. The important thing is the first step, and by reading this article, it seems like you have taken the first step.
If you are wondering; “Why Postpartum Depression?”
When we look at this whole process, you may think of why the mother is at risk of falling into such a depression, while the mother-infant relationship and the care given by the mother to the baby are vital for the continuation of the human race.
Ultimately, when the caregiver is depressed, a newborn baby will not be able to survive in nature under these conditions, which has a negative impact on the continuity of the breed.
Evolutionary psychology explains this situation as follows: When our female ancestors cared for a baby, they actually cared about the baby’s chances of survival and reproduction. The situations where social support was low and there was no partner meant that the baby would receive poorer care, and perhaps because of this, the resources spent by the mother until then would be wasted.
Considering this situation, it is deduced that mothers who spend their resources not on their babies, who have a low chance of surviving, but on their babies, have a high rate of transferring their genes to the next generation, and therefore they can still continue their existence in the population today. (Hagen, 1999)
In conclusion, postpartum depression is a common and serious condition that can affect new mothers after giving birth. It’s important to seek help if you are struggling with postpartum depression, as it can have a negative impact on your health and well-being as well as the health and well-being of your baby. There are several effective treatment options available for postpartum depression, including therapy, medication, and self-care techniques. It’s important to work with your healthcare provider to find the treatment plan that is best for you. Remember, you are not alone and there is hope for overcoming postpartum depression. With the right treatment and support, you can recover and thrive as a mother.
Now it’s your turn – Write a Comment or Share on Social Media
Thanks for reading our blog article on how to overcome postpartum depression? We hope that this article provided some helpful information and tips for managing this common and serious condition. If you have any personal experiences or insights to share on overcoming postpartum depression, we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. Your comments and ideas can provide valuable support and encouragement to others who may be struggling with postpartum depression. So don’t be shy, leave a comment and let’s start a conversation!
- “Postpartum Depression: What It Is, How to Get Help, and What You Can Do” National Institute of Mental Health, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/postpartum-depression-what-you-need-to-know/index.shtml
- “Postpartum Depression: Treatment and Management” American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.acog.org/patient-resources/faqs/pregnancy/postpartum-depression-treatment-and-management
- “Postpartum Depression: How to Get Help and Feel Better” Mayo Clinic, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/postpartum-depression/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20376617
- “How to Overcome Postpartum Depression” Healthline, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.healthline.com/health/postpartum-depression/how-to-overcome
- “Treatment for Postpartum Depression” American Psychological Association, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.apa.org/helpcenter/postpartum-depression/treatment
- “Postpartum Depression: Treatment and Recovery” WebMD, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.webmd.com/depression/postpartum-depression/postpartum-depression-treatment#1
- “How to Overcome Postpartum Depression” Everyday Health, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.everydayhealth.com/postpartum-depression/how-to-overcome/
- “Postpartum Depression: How to Get Help and Feel Better” Parents, accessed January 19, 2023, https://www.parents.com/parenting/moods/postpartum-depression/postpartum-depression-how-to-get-help-feel-better/
It is important to note that postpartum depression is a serious condition that requires professional treatment. If you suspect that you or someone you know may be experiencing postpartum depression, please seek help from a healthcare provider or mental health professional.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for How to Overcome Postpartum Depression?
How do you treat postpartum depression?
A: There are several effective treatment options for postpartum depression, including:
Therapy: Talking with a mental health professional, such as a psychologist or counselor, can be helpful in managing postpartum depression. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and interpersonal therapy (IPT) are two types of therapy that have been shown to be effective for treating postpartum depression.
Medication: Antidepressant medications can be effective in managing postpartum depression. It’s important to work with your healthcare provider to find the medication that is right for you.
Self-care techniques: There are several self-care techniques that can be helpful in managing postpartum depression, such as getting enough rest, eating a healthy diet, and engaging in activities that you enjoy.
How can I support someone with postpartum depression?
A: There are several ways that you can support someone who is struggling with postpartum depression:
Listen: Offer a listening ear and be a supportive presence.
Encourage them to seek help: Encourage the person to seek help from a mental health professional and offer to help them find resources and make appointments
How can I manage postpartum depression at home?
A: There are several things you can do at home to manage postpartum depression:
Practice self-care: Take care of yourself by getting enough rest, eating a healthy diet, and engaging in activities that you enjoy.
Seek support: Talk to a trusted friend or family member about how you are feeling, or consider joining a support group.
Stay active: Engage in physical activity, such as going for a walk or doing some light exercise, which can help improve your mood.
Seek professional help: If your symptoms are severe or are not improving, seek help from a mental health professional.
Can postpartum depression be prevented?
While it is not always possible to prevent postpartum depression, there are several things that can help reduce the risk:
Get support: Surround yourself with supportive friends and family members.
Take care of yourself: Practice self-care by getting enough rest, eating a healthy diet, and engaging in activities that you enjoy.
Seek help early: If you are struggling with symptoms of postpartum depression, seek help as soon as possible.
Know the risk factors: Be aware of the risk factors for postpartum depression, such as a history of depression or a lack of support, and take steps to address these risk factors.