Baby blues and postpartum depression are extremely common following delivery. Baby blues can occur in 80% of women in the postpartum period. It usually starts within one week after giving birth. Symptoms include: drastic mood swings, elation and joy followed by sadness, crankiness and crying spells. If you experience these symptoms, be sure to get plenty of rest and eat well. Be sure to ask family and friends for support and help with the baby and your housework.
Postpartum depression occurs in 1 out of 10 women in the postpartum period. It can begin anytime after birth and may appear for up to a year after delivery. Symptoms include: feelings of despair, extreme weight loss/gain due to appetite changes, difficulty sleeping or sleeping more than usual, crying spells, withdrawal and attempts to avoid the baby. Women with postpartum depression often feel like the don’t want to get out of bed in the morning, like everything is hopeless, like they are staring into a big, black hole and/or like they don’t want to deal with anyone and wish everyone would leave me alone. If you experience any of these symptoms, please contact my office immediately.
Postpartum psychosis is a rare disorder that occurs in 1 in 1000 women in the postpartum period. It usually occurs within two to three weeks after childbirth. Symptoms include: hallucinations (seeing objects), suicidal or homicidal thoughts or gestures and lack of attention to personal hygiene. If your experience any of these symptoms, please contact me immediately or proceed to the emergency room as soon as possible. Postpartum psychosis is a severe medical emergency and requires immediate medical attention. When left untreated, this disorder can have tragic results for both the mother and her child.
As stated above, if you are concerned that you may be suffering from postpartum depression or postpartum psychosis, please contact me. Other resources that you may contact include:
Mental Health Association of Greater Dallas
624 N. Good-Latimer, Ste 200
Dallas, TX 75204
Mental Health Association of Tarrant County
3136 W. 4th Street
Fort Worth, TX 76107