Perinatal Depression & Its Treatment

Mothers often go through a period of depression and anxiety after giving birth. The new responsibility, change in the routine, unrecovered body, and postpartum bleeding is the real reason that can disturb a mother’s mental health.

There’s a common term for prenatal depression before the baby’s birth and postpartum depression after the baby’s birth.

Causes of Perinatal Depression

Pregnancy may be one of the happiest periods in a woman’s life span. But at the same time, it can also recreate mayhem with hormones and cause plenty of stress for the woman undergoing pregnancy.

There was an ancient belief that pregnancy rescued a woman from emotional disruptions and related issues, but that eventually turned out to be a myth as modern studies proved it wrong. Additionally, in the recent and near past, a significant deal of media emphasis has been on the topic of postpartum depression. It might be the reason for word to get out after some time, and the assortment of biological and emotional elements in moms-to-be may direct to stress and unhappiness.

Now, these signs may play a vital role in the diagnosis of perinatal depression. A recent study estimates that 10 and 20 percent of women develop some kind of pregnancy-related mood disorder. 

Symptoms of Perinatal Depression

Depression is closely associated with normal pregnancy these days. The signs and symptoms of depression can be seen clearly if a small sample is drawn from the population. For example, you’re presumably tired, have sleepless nights, undergo emotional shifts, and sometimes gain weight. It is an indication that your pregnancy can conceal any signs of depression.

To assist you with identifying and dealing with depression during pregnancy, it’s better to consult with the doctor if you encounter any of these symptoms:

  • cycles  of weepiness
  • Having  trouble napping 
  • Constant  fatigue and feeling low on energy
  • shifts  in appetite
  • loss  of sense of fun in onetime enjoyable activities
  • raised  tension
  • feeling  troublesome while connecting to your aborning baby (named poor fetal  attachment)

If you have experienced depression before gestation, your signs may be more consequential during gestation than before.

Baby Blues

A modest estimate tells us that 80 percent of women are influenced by what we know as the “baby blues.”

During the period of your gestation, your levels of two vital hormones, estrogen and progesterone, often increase dramatically. These hormones are necessary as they help your uterus expand and to maintain the placenta successfully. The level of these hormones is also linked with the woman’s mood.

Almost after 48 hours of your baby’s delivery, the levels of both hormones in the woman’s body descend significantly. Numerous investigators acknowledge that this “postpartum hormonal crash” provokes the baby blues.

Studies show that after approximately 1 to 2 weeks after the delivery, you might experience baby blues, and after that, they disappear. Until then, you might experience:

  • nervous
  • dazzled
  • frustrated
  • high  chance of mood swings (joy in one moment, sobbing the next)
  • exhausted

Postpartum Depression and Its Symptoms 

According to researchers, a sudden decrease in the levels of estrogen and progesterone after delivering a baby might make some women more exposed to postpartum depression. Postpartum depression influences around 10 and 20 percent of the latest mothers.

One of the major differences between the baby blues and postpartum depression is the period for which both last. Signs of postpartum depression last more than two weeks after your baby’s birth. The symptoms include:

  • dazed
  • intensely  nervous
  • grumpy  or furious
  • sad  and want to cry
  • excessively  tired and without power
  • the  feeling of uselessness, hopelessness, or guilt
  • you  feel like you want to eat and sleep more or less
  • incapable  of focusing 
  • overprotective  of the baby

Postpartum Psychosis

We can term more adverse forms of postpartum depression postpartum psychosis. It is considered an exceptional condition that often affects between 1 and 2 per 1,000women.

Typical signs of postpartum psychosis contain:

  • either  acoustic or optical hallucinations
  • illusions
  • suicidal  manifestations
  • thinking  about harming your baby


The techniques employed to administer perinatal depression are identical to different kinds of depression. The positive point is that patients treated for perinatal depression have more success rate to be better. Combinations of talk therapy and medications help out most women.


Anti-depressant medications are often utilized for treating perinatal depression. Doctors specifically specify particular serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Your doctor might inform you about anti-depressant drugs either during pregnancy or after.

Currently, there is no proof that anti-depressant medicines have long-term detrimental impacts on a child when administrated during pregnancy. Nevertheless, there is a possibility of drug withdrawal responses in newborns, including agitation or irritability. In occasional circumstances, there’s a chance of seizures.

Understandably, mothers are worried about their babies being threatened by side effects. So numerous women opt for different remedies rather than anti-depressants.


Talk therapy has a record of proven effectiveness for perinatal depression.

Some alternative remedies have also shown effectiveness in aiding women with perinatal depression. These alternatives contain massage and particularly acupuncture. For acupuncture, a specialist inserts tiny needles at distinct body parts. 

Please note that prolonged depression would be of more harm than the medications themselves for both the baby and the mother. So close friends and relatives should assist in early identification and care.

Talk to your doctor regarding all the possible treatments for depression if you are experiencing it during pregnancy. You and your doctor can work jointly to make an educated conclusion about the best treatment for you and your baby.

It is always better to consult professionals for guidance. Book your appointment with the gynecologist through Marham for more information.  

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