The birth of your child as well as the first few months after having your baby can be really stressful. This stress coupled with the changes in the hormonal levels in your body can cause the baby blues, which is quite common amongst the new mothers. Usually, baby blues goes away on its own after a few weeks of the delivery, but in case, it does not go away and the symptoms seem to become more serious with time, it might be the case of postpartum depression, which needs some special care. Postpartum depression can hinder your natural ability to take care of yourself and your newborn and hence taking special measures to get rid of it is important.
According to the latest reports, majority of mothers experience different symptoms of baby blues, which commonly include symptoms like mood swings, insomnia, change in appetite, irritability, sadness as well as problem with concentrating. These symptoms typically become evident from a few days after delivery and might go away on its own within a couple of weeks; but in case, it does not, and the symptoms seem to become more severe, it is the time when you should get some help or opt for medical treatment if necessary.
Postpartum depression – the symptoms
When the symptoms of baby blues is coupled with suicidal thoughts or inability of the mother to take care of the newborn child it can be distinguished as postpartum depression, which needs immediate treatment. The most common symptoms of postpartum depression includes,
- Lack of energy, motivation and interest in the newborn
- Negative feelings about the newborn or worrying about hurting the baby
- Feeling guilt or worthlessness
- Quick changes in body weight or appetite
- Recurrent suicidal thoughts
- Changes in sleeping habits
Postpartum depression typically sets in within a few days of the child birth and the intensity of the depression is increased with time. However, in many women it can even appear suddenly, after a few months of the delivery. If not treated in time, postpartum depression can take turn towards postpartum psychosis, which is a much severe condition and might lead to complete madness.
Causes and risk factors of postpartum depression
The exact cause of postpartum depression in some women after experiencing motherhood is not known clearly. However, a number of risk factors and causes can be pointed out that might contribute to the condition. The causes might include,
- Changes in the hormonal levels of the body: Soon after childbirth the levels of the estrogen and progesterone hormones and even thyroid levels can drop down in the body of the mother, which can cause depression, mood swings as well as extreme fatigue.
- Physical and mental stress: Giving birth to a child and caring for the newborn both can be physically as well as mentally stressful. This extra stress can easily contribute to mood swings, irritability and other mental ailments.
It has been found that some women are more likely to develop postpartum depression and the risk factors for it include,
- Previous history of depression
- Medical complications in childbirth
- Relationship problems
- History of severe premenstrual dysphoric disorder
It should be noted that having these risk factors does not necessarily mean that the new mother will suffer from postpartum depression it only indicates a higher chance of the same.
Getting rid of postpartum depression
If you are able to realize that you are suffering from postpartum depression, know it for sure that the cure is not away. In case, the measures as mentioned here seems to take too long to show noticeable improvements, it is better that you opt for medical help. The first step to get rid of postpartum depression is to start taking care for yourself. If you have been neglecting yourself for long enough, it is the time when you should get back and give priority to “you” as a person. Implement the following changes in your lifestyle to get rid of postpartum depression and you are most likely to see quick improvements,
Get adequate sleep for getting rid of postpartum depression
For a new mother getting enough time to sleep can be really difficult, but if you are skimping on your sleep, it might be one of the primary reasons for postpartum depression. After delivery, your own body is still in the recovery stage and you need adequate rest for yourself. So, make it a point to sleep adequately. If you cannot take long sleeps for your baby, start taking small naps throughout the day, so that you do not suffer from lack of sleep, which can affect your mood and your health in the worst way.
Take the best care of your diet to get rid of postpartum depression
What you eat has a high impact on your body as well as on your mind. When postpartum depression sets in, lacking appetite is a common symptom and as the nutrition suffers the depression starts becoming more severe. So, if you are feeling that you are suffering from postpartum depression, make it a point to focus on your diet. Your diet not only has an important role to play in your physical recovery and mental wellbeing after delivery but also in the quality of the breast milk that you feed your newborn.
Exercise can be your mantra to get rid of postpartum depression
If you have the idea that exercise will only exert your already tired body more, you might actually need to give it a second thought. During this period you really need not to take up any heavy exercise regimen, unless you are planning to get back into shape within a month but regular light exercises can give you a lot of benefit. While exercising the feel good hormone is secreted in our body, which is the best natural weapon to fight depression. Simple free hand exercises for 20 minutes a day, can give you all the great results. You can also space your exercise regimen with 30 minutes long walk on alternate days.
Pampering yourself can be most effective to get rid of postpartum depression
One of the best ways to cope with the stressful situation of caring your newborn is to take a break at times and relax. Do things that make you happy. If you have a hobby, get time to indulge in it. Pampering yourself by taking a bubble bath or revitalizing your senses by lighting some scented candles in your room can be the easiest ways to pamper yourself. You can take proper care of your baby, only when you are fit, both physically and mentally, and pampering yourself can be actually effective to give you a good mood and fight off the postpartum depression.
Giving more priority to your relationships can be helpful to cope with postpartum depression
When you are feeling depressed, it is most expected that you will not feel like sharing, but it is the time when it is most important to share and stay connected with your family and friends. Share your problems, your worries as well as your thoughts with your loved ones, so that they can extend an ear to listen and a hand of help when you need it most. Be open about your needs and stay in touch with the people around you, instead of confining yourself in your thoughts. Know for sure that your loved ones, are not less worried for you, and they will be actually happy to be able to help.
Yoga for relieving postpartum depression
It is believed, that yoga can be one of the most effective ways to control your mind and thought processes. By practicing yoga regularly you can actually get a hold on your mind and how it makes you feel, which can be very effective to get rid of postpartum depression enabling you to become more effective and attentive in your day to day life and responsibilities without overtaxing yourself.
Joining a support group can be effective to get rid of postpartum depression
Joining a group of new mothers who might be going through the same physical and mental conditions like you can be highly effective in getting rid of postpartum depression. It is always easier to share your problems with people who are going through the same stage of their lives. Now you can join support groups even through mobile apps. However, we recommend going out regularly to join the support group as it is sure to be more effective in fighting depression.
The bright light therapy for getting rid of postpartum depression
The bright light therapy can be effective in getting rid of post-delivery depression. It is best if you can spend some time everyday under natural sun light, if that is not possible, opt for bright light settings in your home. Bright light can induce secretion of the hormone serotonin in the body which can induce the feeling of wellbeing helping you to get rid of any kind of depression. So, make it a point to be out in the sun for some time daily and use white bright light in your rooms.