Myths about postpartum depression: “Yes, it’s just hormones”

Recently, the world seems to have swept the epidemic of depression. Teenage, senile, and even now the postpartum – what is it, a new fashion? There is, of course, a confusion of concepts, when the seasonal “blues” or “Anglitsky spleen”, about which Pushkin wrote, are called depression. But in reality, such a disease exists, and more often than we may think. And the biggest risk group is young mothers. Their   postpartum depression   they are often not diagnosed, they neglect it, believing that “these are all hormones, lack of sleep, fatigue”, they reproach women that they are not happy about motherhood. And if they detect a disease, they refuse to treat it, because medications and breastfeeding are said to be incompatible. To stop the bad rumors and help those who after the birth of the child for some reason feel not like the photographs of happy mothers with babies in instagramm, debunk the six main myths about postpartum depression.

Myth one: there are no postpartum depressions.

If “ordinary”   depression   is somehow perceived as a disease, although patients are often accused of “just laziness”, then the existence of the postpartum variant is rejected more often. Indeed, why would a young mother feel unhappy? Sit at home, have a rest with a long-awaited baby, occasionally walk with a stroller … Such arguments are advocates of the existence of depressive states can lead to every occasion. Listen to them is not worth it, and here’s why.

Scientific studies prove that postpartum depression does not only exist. This disorder is diagnosed in every fifth of the young mother, unless, of course, to examine all. It is one of the three most common disorders in the functioning of the psyche, developing after the appearance of the baby, along with postpartum anxiety disorder and psychosis. And this is all – officially recognized by medicine diagnoses requiring medical intervention, and often urgent.

Two years ago, depression in a World Health Organization report was cited as the leading cause of disability in all countries. People with depressive states are at risk, and their suicidal tendencies are 25 times higher than those who have not personally experienced depression. Depression exists, and it is a dangerous disease.

Myth Two: Only whiners suffer from depression.

Piero’s melancholic sad – like this, followers of this theory imagine a person prone to depressive disorders. Cheerful, active, busy people do not exactly fall into depression. So? Absolutely not.

Depression has no prophylactic factors according to the nature or temperament. It occurs under the influence of various conditions, from biological, socio-psychological to economic. But character, temperament, life position are not important here, they are not present in any scientific classification as factors of increased or decreased risk. And it is impossible to accurately predict the development of depression, as well as to assert that a particular healthy person will never have it.

The third myth: “yes, these are all hormones after childbirth”

“Baby Blues”, two or three days of low mood and increased tearfulness, overtaking the majority of moms 4-5 days after birth, are really caused by hormones. Their balance changes, and a temporary condition arises, somewhat similar to the premenstrual syndrome. But it is not a depression.This is just a period of the body’s reaction, the same as a three-week rash in infants; it passes by itself, rather quickly and without effort on the part of the mother.

Although hormones may be involved in the development of postpartum depression, but they are not the determining factor, and blaming the change in hormonal levels is wrong. Otherwise, such a condition would be quickly cured by hormone-containing   drugs. Many causes are relevant to the onset of postpartum depression, including a family history of mental disorders, socio-economic factors, sleep deprivation with an infant. The depressed state may develop for the first time after childbirth or be diagnosed for the first time, although a retrospective analysis will reveal symptoms that occurred before pregnancy.

Disorder can last for months and years. The first step is to recognize that this disease is unlikely to go away on its own, which means that we need the help of specialists and families. Family members will have to do what anyone, even the healthiest young mother, needs: to ensure that a woman can sleep, eat and periodically devote time only to herself, and not to the baby, and household chores.

Myth Four: “I am guilty myself”

This myth grows from several previous ones. Prosecutors try to point out that depression develops only among those who can afford to go to bed and not work. In fact, many cases of depressive disorders occur in such a way that the symptoms are not visible, and a stupor in bed is only a form of the disease, not frequent and not long. But the most apparently memorable for the accusation of “laziness” and “the desire to be weak.”

So there is no sense to look for the guilty, depression is not a matter of choice and not a pleasant state, which they fall into in order to “do nothing”. And blaming means worsening the course of the disorder and postponing the possibility of recovery.

Myth Five: “You’re just tired.”

Yes, the young mother is tired, it is a fact. But rest or full sleep do not cure depression, neither “normal” nor postnatal. Moreover, the range of symptoms includes inability to rest and sleep disturbances. “Switching”, “doing something else” also practically does not help anyone, and in some cases mental depletion reaches the point that it is difficult to just get out of bed.

Myth Six: drugs are incompatible with breastfeeding.

Therapy of depression can be based on medication, methods of psychotherapy, or a combination of both. But young mothers usually do not have time to visit a psychotherapist, and many people say about medicines that they are completely incompatible with breastfeeding. How really?

The official approval of medications is determined by the results of clinical trials, and no one has really checked the antidepressants on lactating mothers and will not check, as this is completely unethical. But today a database has been accumulated on the basis of analyzes of the penetration of the active ingredients of antidepressants of a new generation into breast milk, and the concentration there is so low that it is difficult to talk about potential harm. Therefore, you should not reject medications, you must go to an experienced doctor and select drugs that are compatible with breastfeeding. And to be treated the sooner, the better – for both mother and baby.

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