The dangers of not dealing with postnatal depression
In today’s guest post, Stacey from The Therapy Lounge discusses Postnatal Depression and alternative methods of treatment.
The experience of postnatal depression is a lonely and dispiriting condition for new mothers, though it can occur some months after the birth of a baby. This is not the baby blues type phenomenon, which sometimes happens after delivery, when the mother might be tearful, irritable or have mood swings. It is important to distinguish between the baby blues condition and postnatal depression, the former will pass but the latter can be extremely debilitating unless treated. Like most conditions, postnatal depression runs along a spectrum of symptoms from mild to severe. Again, akin to other problems, the symptoms vary from subject to subject but the NHS gives the following overview of the symptoms:
Key symptoms are:
- a persistent feeling of sadness and low mood
- loss of interest in the world around you and no longer enjoying things that used to give pleasure
- lack of energy and feeling tired all the time (fatigue)
Other symptoms can include:
- disturbed sleep – such as not being able to fall asleep during the night (insomnia) then being sleepy during the day
- difficulties with concentration and making decisions
- low self-confidence
- poor appetite or an increase in appetite (‘comfort eating’)
- you become very agitated or alternatively you become very apathetic (can’t be bothered)
- feelings of guilt and self-blame
- thinking about suicide and self-harming
Having a baby is one of the milestone events in a mother’s life and the subliminal associations with motherhood are those of happiness and joy. New mothers may not feel comfortable acknowledging that they are experiencing some of the problems described above, especially at a time when they are expected to be happy. Consequently, it is important for the partner, family or friends to give some thought to how the mother is feeling. The focus at this time is very often on the new baby and it is easy to overlook the wellbeing of the mother. Postnatal depression is not uncommon and figures produced by the NHS say that 1 in 7 mothers may suffer from some form of depression in the months after giving birth. Unlike other ailments, postnatal depression is experienced across all social classes and all ethnic groups.
As with other forms of depression, postnatal depression responds well to therapeutic treatment. The Therapy Lounge provides hypnotherapy in London for the treatment of postnatal depression arising from a variety of causes or life crises. To relieve depression with The Therapy Lounge NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) is used as part in the treatment plan. In simplistic terms, NLP sets out to put the individual in charge of his or her own thinking and reaction patterns.
The wellbeing of a new mother is crucial as their feelings, thoughts, actions and reactions will influence the life chances and development of the new baby. We know enough about child development to recognise the impact that an adult’s state of mind has on the life of a child. Postnatal depression is not a life sentence and the condition can be treated if help is sought, it is in everyone’s interest to seek out solutions.
We’d like to echo Stacey’s sentiments and remind all the mums reading that nothing is ever as hopeless as it seems. If you, or someone close to you is showing signs of PND, ask for, or offer help. Never feel like you have to siffer in silence – you definitely don’t.