Postpartum depression usually begins 2 to 3 weeks after giving birth, but can start any time during the first few days, weeks or months post-delivery. It is common for it to last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. When a woman is suffering from postpartum depression she will often feel sad, tearful, despairing, discouraged, hopeless, worthless or alone. She may also be unable concentrate, have no appetite and she will often feel indifferent toward her baby. These same signs of postpartum depression are often indications that the new mother is overwhelmed. Enlisting family, friends and your spouse to help you care for the house and the baby may alleviate the symptoms.
However, because these feelings can be difficult to handle, they often leave the new mother feeling as though she is just going through the motions, rather than finding joy in things, including her baby. In many cases, feelings and thoughts like these are painful for a woman to experience, especially because this is a time when people think the new mom should be the happiest. If you do not feel joyous over your new baby, it can be difficult to admit to it as you do not want people to think of you do not care about your baby. Many women often ignore postpartum depression until it spirals out of control; don’t ignore how you feel, pay close attention to it and speak with your doctor about how you’re feeling.
Postpartum depression is a medical condition that requires attention and treatment. Not unlike most medical conditions, ignoring it makes it worse. If feelings of sadness and depression are interfering with your regular day-to-day activities, it is time to see a doctor. Your doctor can and will treat you, whether it be by medicating you, setting you up in a support group or referring you to a therapist or some combination of these treatment options. Your doctor can help you find a diet and exercise program that works for you; they will also recommend rest and make sure you have some help. Often, getting some rest, getting some help and talking about your thoughts and feelings will help you relieve the symptoms of depression. When a new mother feels like giving up, that life is not worth living or has suicidal thoughts or feelings, it is critical that she talk to a doctor immediately.
While it is common to suffer from postpartum depression, and while it can last for several months, it is critical that you see your doctor for help. Your doctor will also help you put together the right diet and exercise program to improve your lifestyle in order to help you rid yourself of the feelings of trauma, depression and other negative feelings.
While your doctor can help, it may take a while. Do not give up on your treatment plan as it may take several weeks for you to feel better as you’re being treated for depression. The faster you find help, and get yourself in a positive lifestyle, the sooner you will start to feel better.