Posts Tagged ‘postpartum depression’

DBT Skills for the Fourth Trimester

 

DBT for Managing Emotions for New Moms 

Taking care of a newborn is all encompassing. It is exhausting. And it’s natural to want to give our all to our baby.

How can a new mom maintain emotional balance?  It would be insulting to give a simple answer to this complicated and nuanced question. 

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Postpartum Depression, Shame and Stigma

Postpartum Depression, Shame and Stigma

Clara just had a baby. But she was not feeling very…well, happy. Yes, she felt overpowering love for her new baby. But she also felt irritable, depressed, nauseous and she was crying alot.  Even worse, she started having nightmares. Scary nightmares that she dared not talk to anyone else about. They were, well, just plain disturbing. They centered around things that she imagined could just happen to her baby that were outside of her control.  She was trying to hide behind a veil of smiles and perky laughter.

Clara felt very scared  and very, very, ashamed of herself. She wondered why she wasn’t happy. She didn’t want to admit she was  depressed. After all, she couldn’t possibly have a mental illness! Weren’t people who are depressed kind of crazy and lazy? What couldn’t she talk herself out of this?

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Facing the reality of postpartum depression

Postpartum depression changed my life.

I let my postpartum depression go untreated for a long time after I gave birth and I shouldn’t have done that, I suffered needlessly and caused my husband to suffer needlessly. I did go to a therapist, who very kindly referred me to a female psychiatrist (over and over again!).But, I refused to go see this psychiatrist, as I was nursing my son. My nursing times with him were the best times of the day, it was soothing to relax, sit down, and just feel the love between us! And I did not want to expose him to any form of medication through my breastmilk, especially not daily antidepressants!

Back then, 17 years ago, there wasn’t much perer-reviewed research literature published regarding the risks and safety of different psychotropic medications for use during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Now,  you can easily access accurate, succinct, and professional consumer information about pregnancy, breastfeeding and psychotropic medications on the Mother to Baby website , which is a website run by teratogen specialists. There is a mountain of information, plus free, live counseling with a teratogen specialist,  that can help you make an informed decision with your doctor.

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BirthTouch® Small Business Saturday Free Book Download!

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Interview with Kathy Morelli: Journey of a PPD Survivor

Ivy Shih Leung, postpartum depression author, activist and award winning blogger,  interviewed me for her blog. She is a passionate, outspoken advocate for women, families and social justice.

Some background about Ivy from her blog:  Ivy is  a PPD survivor.  She had her daughter in December 2004 and suffered from PPD about 6 weeks later.  Fortunately, with the help of Paxil which she started taking in February 2005, her frightening experience came to an end 4 weeks later.   Tom Cruise’s infamous rantings “There’s no such thing as a chemical imbalance” triggered an intense reaction and an overwhelming desire to tell him, and others like him, to “Shut up unless you’ve been through PPD yourself.”

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EPDS can help you determine if you are postpartum depressed

Perinatal mood disorders are the most common complication of childbirth. 15 – 20 % of women experience symptoms of depression and anxiety during pregnancy and in the first year after giving birth. Postpartum depression is the most common term used, but there are a few differential diagnoses that can be found in the perinatal mood distress category. Postpartum depression (PPD), postpartum anxiety (PPA), postpartum obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), bipolar disorders, postpartum psychosis and postpartum birth trauma. You can find out more about these categories at the BirthTouch® website or at Postpartum Support International.

Screening

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Mindbody Pregnancy and Postpartum Care

Pregnancy and birth are major adult transitions filled with joy, but the transition to parenthood can also bring up feelings of insecurity, sadness or fear as you and your partner move into this different phase of self-identity. Parenting an infant is difficult, but if one of you had a complicated early family life, parenting is like navigating rough waters, as flashbacks to unpleasant scenes from childhood intrude upon present reality.

If you’ve experienced a previous depression or anxiety or trauma or went through infertility treatments, have a baby in the NICU, or experienced childhood abuse, you have a higher risk that the physical and emotional changes of childbirth could bring on recurrent symptoms. Because of the hormonal fluctuations experienced at childbirth, 85% of all women experience the baby blues, which is a sadness after childbirth that resolves itself in about 2 weeks.

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Medications, pregnancy and breastfeeding

 

Did you know that 99% of women who stop breastfeeding due to medications can actually continue?

Istock/PelageyaKlubnikina

As a new mother 22 (short?) years ago, I suffered postpartum depression. I was breastfeeding and refused to take any medications for it. I think I would’ve come out of the depression sooner if I had opted for medication. But, I was afraid. There weren’t many studies back then. Now there are a lot of studies on this topic and there’s a lot of information available about medications and pregnancy and breastfeeding.

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Talking to your child about infant loss

Infant Loss is a Family Event

The death of a baby is a deep loss. Parents who have lost a baby to miscarriage or stillbirth are struggling to cope with their grief. And often these parents have young children who were looking forward to having a little brother or little sister. Even in their time of pain, parents need to find ways to answer their surviving children’s questions about death and help them cope with their emotions.

Parents Set the Emotional Tone

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Book Review: Dancing on the Edge of Sanity by Ana Clare Rouds

Dancing on the Edge of Sanity

asks once again

How Often Must We Ask for Sensitive Care?

 

It’s easy to connect with Ana Clare Rouds’ personal story of the reality of motherhood in her book, Dancing on the Edge of Sanity. She shares her personal story about her experience with postpartum depression, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder, and she eloquently brings out several issues.

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Kathy Morelli

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