What are the signs and symptoms of post-natal depression?
The charity 4Children, in 2011, produced a survey that they ran with the parenting club Bounty to look into postnatal depression further. From it, they gathered information to explain what are the common signs and symptoms of post natal depression.
It revealed “that a toxic combination of lack of awareness of the symptoms of postnatal depression and fear of the stigma attached to it are preventing thousands of new mothers from seeking help at the early stages of this illness. This, despite the fact that an estimated one in ten new mothers will suffer from it – approximately 70,000 women a year in England and Wales – from across the social spectrum”.
If you would like to read their report “suffering in silence” you can find it here.
You may find knowing what the symptoms are beneficial as this really opened my eyes.
In 2020, two years after my second child & eight years after my first child, I realised I had 13/14 of these:
What are the symptoms of post-natal depression?
- Persistent feelings of sadness/low mood/misery that may be worse in the mornings.
- Constantly exhausted, lack of energy and feeling tired all the time.
- Feeling unable to cope with looking after your baby.
- Feeling guilty about not being able to cope with not loving the baby enough.
- Feeling easily overwhelmed and anxious about the baby.
- Tearful for no reason.
- Problems concentrating and making decisions.
- Trouble sleeping at night and feeling sleepy in the day.
- No appetite or the urge to eat, or increased appetite (comfort eating).
- Difficulties in bonding with the baby feelings of indifference or no sense of enjoyment.
- Difficulties in their relationship with their partner
- Low energy levels
- Low sex drive
- Withdrawal from family or friends
Generally, these symptoms start 4 – 6 weeks post-birth so are not the same as the early day ‘Baby blues”.
The report states “If a new mother is experiencing around three of the above symptoms, she is considered to have mild postnatal depression. Having five or six of the symptoms is considered moderate postnatal depression, and experiencing more than five or six is considered severe postnatal depression”.
Please note that 1 in 10 women will experience post-natal depression and that figure is possibly lower than it should be as many of us do “suffer in silence”, I know I did.
The sooner you receive support and help the better you will feel. Treatment is available and often works very effectively in a short space of time.
Ditch the stigma.
Acknowledge how you feel.
It’s more common than you think but you are not alone.
Big hugs as with time and support, things do get a lot easier.
If you want more information on your mental health and wealth please see the free resources I have on my website dedicated to this.