Postpartum depression – A serious problem, which affects not only women themselves, but also newborns. Many women continue to care for the baby, but they do it without a soul and do not feel affection for their child. There are also tragic cases. According to new research, the risks of developing postpartum depression depend on numerous factors: the severity and duration of pain after childbirth, whether anesthesia was used, and at what time of year the baby was born. MedAboutMe will tell you more about the study.
Postpartum Depression: Research Data
In the course of various studies, it was possible to identify factors that influence the likelihood of postpartum depression in women: the severity and duration of pain after childbirth, whether anesthesia was used, whether natural childbirth, body mass index, age and even season.
Scientists hope that the results will help reduce the likelihood of depression, because, knowing the possible risks, you can develop a prevention program.
Postpartum depression is more than a bad mood, it is pronounced anxiety, sadness, physical and emotional fatigue, mood changes that occur after childbirth. Without timely intervention and treatment, such a condition can affect the emotional establishment of the “mother-child” relationship, as well as affect the physical and mental health of the woman. It is logical to assume that depression has a negative effect on caring for the child, in severe cases, mothers can even harm their children.
Recently, the number of reported cases of postpartum depression has increased. According to experts: one of the reasons is the spread of psychological assistance and a purposeful appeal to a specialist. Previously, women tried to cope with such problems on their own.
Specialists have determined the factors that can increase the likelihood of depression: chronic stress before pregnancy, premature birth, readiness and awareness of changes in one’s own organism, etc.
Pain after childbirth
At the World Congress of Anesthesiologists held in Hong Kong, the scientific world was presented a report: the risks of postpartum depression in mothers depends on the duration of pain after childbirth.
Scientists noted that the already known factors that cause depression after childbirth, namely, stress, fluctuations in hormone levels, changes in the usual way of life, financial difficulties, need to add the pain that occurs and continues after childbirth.
The data showed that women experiencing pain of varying severity for several weeks had a higher chance of developing postpartum depression.
These results were obtained after a survey of more than 200 healthy women whose labor was anesthetized. All women were asked to take some tests and answer the questions of the questionnaire, the key question among which was the feeling of pain, and how long it lasted after giving birth.About 130 women noted severe pain associated with childbirth and complications in them, which lasted more than 4 weeks. And of this amount, about 6%, later, developed postpartum depression.
Women who noted the presence of pain, but if it lasted less than 4 weeks, there were less risks of developing depression.
In general, the authors of the study noted: prolonged pain after childbirth, stress, anxiety and lifestyle changes are the main causes of postpartum depression, and not all women can cope with them.
The results once again indicate the need to develop an effective solution to the problem of pain after childbirth in order to reduce the likelihood of developing depression, as well as other complications.
Childbirth in winter or summer
Another study assessed the impact of the time of year when the baby was born and the likelihood of depression. The study analyzed the medical records of more than 20,000 women who gave birth from June 2015 to August 2017. The data showed that approximately 1,000 women were diagnosed with postpartum depression.
The main goal of the study is to identify the factors influencing the likelihood of its development. Analysis of the data showed that in women who gave birth in spring and winter, the risks of depression were much lower compared with those who gave birth in the autumn and summer, respectively.
Scientists have suggested that this dependence is due to weather conditions: in the cold season, mothers are forced to spend more time with the baby at home, which is beneficial to both parties. The birth of a baby in summer, especially care, well-being in some cases limits walks and stays outside, which does not add a good mood to anyone.
Other predisposing factors
Preterm birth is also one of the factors associated with the development of postpartum depression, which is not surprising. A new mother will feel more confident and experience less stress and feelings if a strong, healthy baby is born. Following this logic, malformations and developmental abnormalities are also one of the factors behind the development of depression.
Some studies have noted the value of mother’s body mass index. It is proved that women with the presence of body weight are more likely to develop pregnancy than those who have a normal body mass index.
Scientists from the United States noted the ethnic side of the issue: representatives of the European race had lower risks of developing depression, which can be explained by differences in lifestyle, upbringing, culture, and the importance of social and financial status was also noted.
The results of the research helped to identify those factors that were not previously taken into account. Of course, some factors cannot be eliminated and they are difficult to correct, but it is quite possible to take measures to prevent the development of depression by their action.
Scientists hope that the results will be taken into account not only by the gynecologists who are leading the pregnancy, but also by the women themselves, who in the event of alarming symptoms promptly seek medical help from qualified specialists.