It is more common than you might think: depression during pregnancy. Many women are ashamed of this. That is probably because not much is being talked about. Somewhere there is an unwritten reason that you should not be depressed if you are pregnant or have given birth to a healthy baby. Nevertheless, 1 in 10 women become depressed after the pregnancy.
Depressions during or after pregnancy are caused by hormonal changes in your body and the changes in your life after the birth of your child. Think of broken or sleepless nights, little time for yourself and your partner and press your relationship.
Depressions during pregnancy: prenatal depression
Some women feel very depressed, labile or easily irritated in the first 11 to 12 weeks of their pregnancy. This is mainly caused by the ovaries producing hormones that can have this effect. After 12 weeks of pregnancy, the placenta takes over the production of hormones and in many cases dejection disappears. This is not called prenatal depression.
Depression during pregnancy is much more severe than the sadness you can experience in the beginning of your pregnancy. Some women are depressed for 9 months.
Symptoms of depression during pregnancy:
- fatigue and gloom;
- do not feel joy about the arrival of your baby;
- think or be afraid to go crazy;
- have strange or bad thoughts;
- feeling panic;
- fear of doing strange things.
In addition, physical complaints can also occur such as nausea, headache, back pain, vomiting or fainting.
In many cases, prenatal depression develops in a postnatal depression. It is rare that the depression disappears after pregnancy.
Experience Blog: I was depressed during pregnancy!
Depression after pregnancy
You would expect that you are floating on a pink cloud after the delivery and everything is full of rose scent and moonshine. Especially if you have a child wish for a long time. If you have a postnatal depression, this is not the case at all, which leads to feelings of guilt for many women.
You have a postnatal depression if you notice the following symptoms:
- Being overworked and nervous with no apparent reason;
- You feel unhappy and you have to cry a lot;
- Sleep deprivation and overtired;
- You can not enjoy your child well;
- You feel lethargic, have no sense and you feel lonely;
- Thinking that you are a bad mother and you have regularly suffered from panic attacks.
It is possible to develop a postnatal depression without suffering from depression during pregnancy.
Other causes of depression
Women who have had a miscarriage can also become depressed. In addition, it happens that an abortion can also cause depressive feelings or extreme dejection. Finally, postnatal depression occurs not only in women, but also in men. This is often the result of lack of sleep, a lot of pressure and changes in your relationship because there is now a child.
How can you treat depression during and after delivery?
It seems that swallowing vitamin B6 and fish oil can help against these depressions. If this does not work then you can switch to hormone therapy. If the depression is really severe, the doctor or psychiatrist may decide to prescribe antidepressants. You can also go for a depression treatment with a psychologist or psychiatrist who is based on cognitive behavioral therapy possibly supplemented with previously mentioned anti-depressants. Of course it always helps to talk about your feelings with others or in therapy.
What does not help is ashamed of your dejection. You can not do anything about it. In addition, the shame only makes you feel more lonely and you sink further into the depression. Try to talk about it and seek support from others or from mothers who are in the same boat. Various forums have been established for this. In any case, you are never alone!