Topic: When to seek mental health help after giving birth
Growing up, I don’t think I have ever seen my mother take a break, fall ill, or share her feelings when I would see her crying over something… I noticed this continue into adulthood. I have then realized I am doing as she did, as well as so many mothers do in my birth work.
Societal expectations also create a gap in addressing mental health issues from pregnancy and beyond. We see photos depicting mothers with their newborn child feeling all this love and happiness. This allows the audience to perceive that that is how postpartum should be, and if we are experiencing something different, there’s something very wrong.
If you are feeling that way, know that your feelings are valid. Pregnancy, birth, and all the emotions that come with it are different for everyone. Recent studies have shown an increase in the rate of mental health issues for women who are pregnant and in the postpartum period.
Postpartum mental health issues come in many forms including blues, psychosis, depression, anxiety, PTSD, and more. These are actually common and can affect one’s daily life, even during pregnancy. It is important to know that emotions during pregnancy and postpartum are different for everyone, but that doesn’t mean that what you’re experiencing is “normal.”
How do you know when it’s time to seek help?
If you are pregnant and are in the postpartum period, you know yourself better than anyone else. If you feel that you may have changes in emotions that you are not able to understand or handle and if these emotions last for more than two weeks, please contact your health-care provider as soon as possible.
It is also important to note that physical problems such as feeling overly fatigue or experiencing pains may lead to these emotions. Aside from seeking help from your provider, there are also virtual support groups available and mommy play dates that happen on island.
Topic Discussed: When to seek mental health help after giving birth
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