Is it baby blues or depression?

Updated: Jul 7

It's common and normal to experience strong emotions during pregnancy. You may feel anxious or depressed about the change that pregnancy brings, and pressure to feel constant happiness about what's to come. It's a well-known fact that hormones fluctuate throughout pregnancy and especially after childbirth. Everything you feel is genuine and real. You're doing a fantastic job in a very difficult situation, so be kind to yourself.

Having a baby is a huge adjustment. During pregnancy or when you become a new parent, it's common to get depressed, have mood swings, feel anxious and be very tired. This doesn't necessarily mean that you have depression. New moms often feel low two to three days after the baby is born. This is called Baby Blues and usually passes within two weeks. But if you have a persistent low mood, you may be suffering from depression. In this case, it's important to seek help.

When baby blues lead to depression

How can you tell if you're depressed or if it's just the baby blues? People often say that when someone has depression, they feel continuously sad every day for over two weeks. Take a look at the following statements to see if you recognize yourself in any of them:

  • You have difficulty feeling joy. Things you used to enjoy doing are no longer fun.

  • You have trouble sleeping and feel very tired. You have difficulty concentrating.

  • You have feelings of guilt and hopelessness. You feel worthless.

  • Your mood changes constantly, you feel anxious or panicky.

  • You gain or lose weight, find it hard to eat or snack all the time.

  • You have a hard time taking care of your personal hygiene and/or your baby.

  • It's difficult to meet friends and relatives.

  • You think about harming yourself or your baby.

Getting help

Your co-parent may also become depressed during or after the pregnancy. You may think about sharing this article with them or sending it to a friend if you're a single parent, to help keep track of the warning signs.

Contact your family doctor, midwife or a psychologist if you think you have depression. You can also call a mental health support hotline to assess your symptoms and get help.

Source: 1177

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