Treating Depression

Updated: Jul 7

Being pregnant or having a baby takes a toll on the body and mind. Feeling depressed when your hormones have put you on an emotional roller coaster is extremely difficult. If you feel mentally unstable, you should seek help. There is nothing shameful about getting support and it doesn't make you a bad mother. Quite the contrary — you're helping yourself so you can care for your child. Help is available via your family doctor. There are various forms of treatments: advice and support, psychotherapy and medication.

Talk Therapy

It's important to feel that you're being heard and understood. During talk therapy, you meet with a nurse, doctor, psychologist or counselor on several occasions, and talk about what feels difficult and where you need support. If you've already given birth, it may be a good idea to attend the session without your baby, if possible.


Medication

There are medicines that can help you feel better which won't harm your baby if you're pregnant or breastfeeding. Your doctor will advise you on this. Medication is usually prescribed in combination with therapy.


Screening for Postpartum Depression Six to eight weeks after giving birth, you should be screened for postpartum depression. You'll fill in a form called the EPDS, which stands for Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale. The form has been developed to find early signs of depression and is available in about 20 languages. This is also the form we use in your Daily Check-in to identify if you are at risk of postpartum depression. After the test, you meet with a nurse. This can be a good opportunity to bring up things that feel difficult. Your nurse can then refer you to psychologist or a doctor if you need further support. If you haven't been contacted for a screening after 3 months, reach out to your midwife.


Support for partner or co-parent Co-parents or adoptive parents can also get support through a family doctor. You can have an individual conversation with a provider where you talk through how you're feeling.


Source: 1177



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