Post Natal Depression Support – Many women and mothers are familiar with the expression “the baby blues,” referring to the period of melancholy that is often experienced by new mothers following the birth of a child. These feelings can leave new mothers feeling anxious or weepy for several days following birth due to the hormonal changes of pregnancy and delivery. And, because these baby blues are incredibly common, experienced by up to eighty-five percent of women following the birth of a child, they can often mask a much more serious problem—the development of post-natal depression.
Although post-natal depression is also not uncommon, it is more serious due to its lingering effects on the mother and baby and its tendency to be written off as a “normal” part of the delivery process. It is important for new mothers to know that if you are experiencing depressive symptoms for longer than a week following the birth of your child, this is not part of the typical baby blues. Experienced by about 1 in 8 women, these symptoms seem unshakeable and can hang about for days, weeks or even months, leaving you feeling as though you are carrying a heavy burden that you just can’t shake. Although post-natal depression looks different for everyone, other symptoms may include:
- Feeling numb or having difficulty bonding with your baby or partner
- Lack of appetite
- Unable to sleep or sleeping too much
- Anxiety or panic attacks
- Tendency to cry for seemingly no reason
Fortunately, there is help for those who are struggling with feelings of post-natal depression. The professional counsellors at Horizon Plymouth understand the unique struggles faced by new mothers who are struggling to balance the care of their newborn with the debilitating symptoms of depression that they are experiencing. Our expert staff can help you understand what you are experiencing and work through your symptoms so that you can resume your roles as a mother with greater freedom.
How can counselling help post-natal depression?
Although post-natal depression is similar to the diagnosis of major depressive disorder, it does have some distinct characteristics that set it apart. However, counselling is still an effective way to treat post-natal depression and help guide coping strategies and symptom management as you work towards recovery. Some of the ways that Horizon Plymouth counselling can help battle post-natal depression include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): CBT is an effective and common way for therapists to work with you in order to explore your maladaptive thinking patterns and help you to reframe them in a more effective manner over time.
- Understanding the diagnosis: Occasionally, women experiencing post-natal depression struggle with feeling as though they are a failure due to the difficulties they experience. Working with a counsellor can help you to understand that these feelings are not uncommon, and that they stem from biological and hormonal changes within you that are not due to any sort of personal failing on your part.
- Coping strategies: The recovery process can often take time, and during that time you still have to care for and bond with your new infant. A counsellor can help you to discover ways that allow you to best manage your symptoms while continuing to uphold your role as a mother. These coping strategies look different for everyone and working with a counsellor can help to guide the discovery of how to best manage your lifestyle in the meantime.
If you are struggling with ongoing symptoms of post-natal depression following the birth of your child, please do not wait to seek help for this treatable diagnosis. The experts at Horizon Plymouth understand how debilitating the symptoms can be, and we can help you to get back on your feet and experience the joys of motherhood unencumbered once again. Call today to schedule an initial consultation and begin your journey towards a healthier you.