Feeling sad, empty or anxious after your baby's birth?
Up to 80% of women feel sad or anxious during the first few weeks after childbirth. If these feelings continue or get worse, you may have Postpartum Mood Disorder (PPMD).
What are the signs of PPMD?
- Feeling overwhelmed or anxious
- Having a fear of being alone with your baby
- Feeling hopeless, sad or lonely
- Changes to sleeping and eating patterns
- Fear that you may harm yourself or your baby
What are the risk factors that can lead to PPMD?
- Depression and/or anxiety during pregnancy
- Family history of depression
- Stressful life events
- Lack of social support
- Low self-esteem
- Relationship difficulties
- Personality of mother (worrier, nervous)
- Pregnancy complications
- Traumatic delivery
- Premature or sick baby
PPMD can interfere with mother-infant bonding, can negatively influence maternal health and can create stress amongst other family relationships.
What can dads do to help?
Dealing with postpartum mood disorder can be demanding for everyone involved. There are some things fathers and partners can do to make it easier: reassure your partner; listen without judging; be patient and realize you cannot be the solution finder; encourage your partner to seek outside help if she needs it. More information and tips for partners is available at www.helpformom.ca/tipsfordads.
Where can someone get help in Oxford County?