10 Signs Someone You Know Is Suffering From Postpartum Depression
After carrying their babies for months, new mothers should be excited to finally meet their little ones. But according to a study, 15% of women struggle to find joy in being mothers due to postpartum depression (PPD). This is linked to the rapid drop in hormones after delivery. Since it is dangerous for this depression to be left untreated, sometimes it is up to the people around these women to pick up on these symptoms and call for help.
We at Bright Side want that we all look carefully at new mothers, to see if they are showing signs of postpartum depression before it’s too late.
1. They constantly doubt that they can be a good mother.
“Mostly, I felt like I was not a good mom.” — Serena Williams
Every good mother worries about whether or not they are doing everything they can for their babies. But if you know a new mom who seems to always doubt her ability to be a good enough mother, she may be suffering from depression. She might think she’s a failure and that her presence isn’t needed in the world.
2. They withdraw from family and friends.
“My husband did an amazing job pushing me to not give up communicating.” — reddit user
Someone who is going through postpartum depression might clam up and shut down, even from their loved ones. They might feel like they can’t open up to anyone because they’ll be labelled a bad mother or that their baby will be taken away. It’s already hard for them to accept how they’re feeling, they’d think that surely others could not possibly understand them any better.
3. They’ve lost interest in what they used to enjoy.
If someone you know to be a movie buff or a yoga lover no longer has an interest in the things that they really enjoyed before giving birth, it could be a symptom of postpartum depression. Though it might take time for them to resume activities after giving birth, if they clearly do not get pleasure when doing what they used to love doing, it could be a cause for concern.
4. They lose their appetite or eat too much.
“I didn’t have an appetite. I would go 2 days without a bite of food, and you know how big of a deal food is for me.” — Chrissy Teigen
After childbirth, if a woman experiences a significant change in her appetite, it could be something to worry about. She could have no appetite and refuse to eat or she could be swallowing meal after meal. As a result, she could lose a lot of weight or gain a lot of weight, which would not be healthy for her physically and psychologically.
5. They express thoughts of harming themselves or others.
This is perhaps the most telling sign of all that the new mom is suffering from depression. The woman in your life who mentions, hints, or even jokes about death, suicide, or hurting someone else should be taken seriously. Left alone to entertain these thoughts, another life might again be lost to postpartum depression.
6. They cry way too much.
" I think I got lucky not to have it to an extreme case, but you can see yourself spiraling." — Behati Prinsloo
Bringing a new life into the world can be overwhelming emotionally. But if a woman cries excessively, it is likely that something else is going on under the surface. If you ask why they’re crying, they might not be able to tell you the reason because they don’t know it themselves.
7. They are unable to sleep or they sleep too much.
Obviously the sleeping pattern of a mother to a newborn will change. But if the woman is exhausted, yet unable to rest when the baby’s asleep or if she sleeps all the time, it might be a warning that she needs help.
8. They cannot concentrate or make decisions.
“Even showering was a struggle.” — imgur user
Having someone new to take care of can be too much, but it shouldn’t be to the point of not being able to think straight. The woman you love may be depressed if she is unable to focus or has difficulty remembering things and make daily decisions.
9. They get very angry.
Though being a parent to a newborn can be stressful, there shouldn’t be a need for someone to lash out all the time. The woman who just earned the title of mother to a new life could be battling depression if she’s irritable, anxious, or angry without knowing why she’s upset.
10. They suffer from unexplained physical aches and pains.
“Getting out of bed to get to set on time was painful. My lower back throbbed, my shoulders—even my wrists—hurt.” — Chrissy Teigen
A woman who has just pushed a human being out into the world will definitely experience physical changes. Yet, to suffer from physical aches and pains, like frequent headaches, stomach problems, and muscle pain could mean more than just routine bodily aches. It could be her body’s cry for help because her mind is not okay.
Which of these signs have you noticed in someone you know who has recently given birth? Can you name any other way to know if someone is suffering from postpartum depression?
Preview photo credit chrissyteigen / instagram
Illustrated by Marat Nugumanov for BrightSide.me