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Postpartum Depression – Coping with the Baby Blues

Postpartum depression (PPD), a depressive mood disorder that may occur after a woman gives birth, is a very serious issue that every pregnant woman MUST be aware of.  According to the American Psychological Association, a recent study suggests that approximately 1 in 7 women may experience postpartum depression in the year after giving birth. Let’s dive into post-partum depression.

Within a few hours of giving birth the amount of estrogen and progesterone return to their pre-pregnancy levels. This drop-in hormone levels can affect a woman’s mood. In some women, the levels of thyroid hormones decrease as well. This decrease in hormones can lead to symptoms of depression as well. Symptoms include a depressed mood, loss of interest in daily things, problems sleeping, fatigue, irritability, and weight gain.

Another factor that can lead to postpartum depression is genetics. This type of depression can be passed down from mother to daughter. There is also a correlation between postpartum depression and women who suffer from severe premenstrual syndrome (PMS).

In addition to the drastic changes in hormone levels, the presence of a new baby in the house is also a major factor in postpartum depression. A new baby can be a major stress on a new mom and this can factor into becoming depressed. Some of these factors include:

  • Having less free time then before the baby was born
  • The inability to control the time needed to get things done
  • The baby demands all the mother’s attention, leaving little time for herself.

Also, going through labor is extremely stressful and tiring for a new mom. A new mom does not have time to regain her strength post-delivery because of the demands and needs of the new baby. Just getting a good night’s sleep is nearly impossible with late-night feedings and diaper changes.

Many new mothers question their own ability to be a good mom. They become overwhelmed with the care the new baby needs and start to worry that they aren’t providing the care their baby needs.

For new moms, postpartum depression can occur with a feeling that they are no longer who they used to be. Their old schedule and ways of doing things have been replaced by the needs of their new baby. They can also feel like they have to do it all and try to take care of the new baby while doing all the things they used to do. This can be very overwhelming because chances are the care of the new baby will not allow them to accomplish all that they think they should.

New moms can also become disconnected from their partner and family. They find that their time is limited and they just don’t have time to spend with the rest of their family.

For most women, the “baby blues” will usually go away as their hormone levels get back to normal. But for some women, the depression associated with a new baby does not go away and can steadily get worse. It is very important that women who experience any kind of depression after childbirth talks to their doctor right away. Most cases of postpartum depression can be treated with medication and counseling.

Until next time #GYNEGirls and #Preggos…

 Dr. Drai

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Dr. Drai

Dr. Drai

Dr. Draion M. Burch, DO (Dr. Drai) – a highly respected, board-certified Obstetrician and Gynecologist – is a nationally-recognized author, speaker, consultant, and go-to media expert on women’s health and transgender health issues. He travels the country to meet with women one-on-one and in groups to provide and instruct on healthcare. Although Dr. Drai may be requested to spread his medical expertise to all four corners of the U.S., he always makes time to genuinely help those in need. As a pragmatic physician who offers endless charisma, high energy, and a larger-than-life personality, his “bedside manner” makes it obvious why his patients have named Dr. Drai “America’s OBGYN.” Dr. Drai is the founder and chief medical advisor of DrDrai.com, where he discusses actionable ideas and real-world strategies to help women take control of their health. As an openly gay gynecologist he has patients flocking to him and his website for not only his medical expertise, but because of the security they feel in the way he cares for, relates to, and teaches women about subjects ranging from embarrassing vaginal care to serious sexual assault. His mission: Real medical advice, simplified. Dr. Drai takes his unique brand to the camera on his YouTube channel to spill his popular “Medical T” (TIPS) helping his self-titled #Preggos, #GYNEGirls and #GENTs pursue a healthier life. Dr. Drai’s on-point advice on off-the-wall questions about sexual health issues has many calling him a “sexpert.” Dr. Drai earned his Doctorate of Osteopathic Medicine degree from The Ohio University and completed his internship and residency at Michigan State University.

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