Beyond baby blues: when it’s time to seek help – Ep. 27

November 8, 2021
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Moms and moms-to-be deserve the best care. This is especially true when it comes to mental health. The joy of motherhood is often the focus, but it’s important to acknowledge that having a baby can be challenging in sometimes unanticipated ways. 

The “baby blues” tend to strike after birth and are fairly common. Women experience a drop in hormones after giving birth, and often feel overwhelmed and stressed with a new baby at home.

Postpartum depression goes beyond baby blues. It’s a persistent sense of feeling overwhelmed and sad that lasts longer than the baby blues and is more severe. It can impact a woman’s ability to do her usual daily activities – women may have trouble sleeping, making meals, showering or driving.

Postpartum depression, a type of perinatal mood and anxiety disorder, is both common and treatable. Our goal in episode 27 is to help listeners better understand postpartum depression, learn to recognize the signs and identify resources for treatment.

Listen as host Mark Gomez, MD, and his guests, Susan Cheng, PhD, MPH, and Ravae Sinclair, JD, CLC, CD (DONA), discuss postpartum depression and when it’s time to seek help. 


Myths vs. Facts

“It’s just the “baby blues” and will pass on its own.” – Myth
Postpartum depression (PPD) doesn’t pass. It’s beyond the baby blues and often needs to be treated.

“Untreated PPD affects your ability to care for yourself and to bond with your baby.” – Fact
It can interfere with your relationship with your baby. It prevents you from problem solving (asking someone to watch the baby while you shower, for example).

“Postpartum depression can be prevented.” – Myth
We don’t have a great understanding of exactly what happens biologically. We can prevent PPD from getting worse through treatment and support. We can surround a new mom in social support and resources to help decrease the feeling of being overwhelmed.

“There is treatment for PPD which makes recovery possible.” – Fact
Treatment must be individualized, and not just rely on medication. 

“You may not know you are depressed because you are so busy caring for your newborn.” – Fact
You can miss it because we normalize being absorbed in a new baby, as well as the exhaustion that results from that.

“It means you’re a bad parent.” - Myth
You are not a terrible mom. You’re going through a lot physically, mentally and emotionally.


Listener healthy OH-YEAH!

If you have any health goals or a health success story, then please share them with us. Simply send a direct message to @Health360wDrG across all social media platforms. Dr. G genuinely enjoys hearing about your journey, and with your permission will read it on the show. Who knows? Your story may inspire someone else who needs to hear it.

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