Perinatal Mood Disorders? What are they? & what are the symptoms?

BABY BLUES:

-Most commonly heard of & affects 60%-80% of new moms

-Symptoms include Crying, emotional highs & lows, feeling overwhelmed with motherhood

-Due to the extreme hormone fluctuation at birth

-Lasts no more than 2 days to 2 weeks

 

POST PARTUM DEPRESSION:

-Symptoms include sadness, crying, unexplained physical complaints, suicidal thoughts, appetite changes, sleep disturbances, poor concentration, irritability & anger, hopelessness & helplessness, guilt and shame.

-1 in  5 women suffer from some form of post partum depression or anxiety after delivery of baby

READ MORE ABOUT PPD & RESOURCES!

 

POST PARTUM ANXIETY:

-Symptoms include agitation, inability to sit still, excessive concern about baby's or her own health, high alert, appetite changes, sleep disturbances, constant worry, racing thoughts, shortness of breath, heart palpitations

-PANIC is often co-incidence with post partum anxiety. PANIC are episodes of extreme anxiety. Shortness of breath, chest pain, dizziness, sensations of choking or smothering, dizziness, holt or cold flashes, trembling, rapid heart rate, excessive worry or fear, PANICS typical three greatest fears are fear of dying, fear of going crazy, and fear of losing control.

-Anxiety is the most common disorder among women in general, affecting every 1 out of 2 women at some point in life.

 

PERINATAL OCD:

-70% of women previously diagnosed with OCD experience a recurrence of symptoms during pregnancy.

-Classic compulsions of OCD are: cleaning, checking, counting, ordering, obsession with germs & cleanliness, checking on baby, hypervigilence

-OCD Symptoms include: Intrusive, repetitive thoughts-- usually of harm coming to baby--, tremendous guilt & shame making you horrified of these thoughts. Hypervigilence, and moms engage in the compulsive behaviors to avoid harm or minimize the triggers.

-OCD typically occurs along with depression

 

TRAUMA:

-trauma is experience by anyone who experiences directly the traumatic event, or witnesses the event. first hand exposure or repeated or extreme exposure to aversive details of the traumatic event, causes clinically significant distress or impairment in the individual's social interactions, capacity to work or in other areas of life.

 

PTSD: 

PTSD is associated with trauma. 12.3 % of women in the general population have experienced or are experiencing PTSD, 9% of them being post partum women.

Symptoms of PTSD: intrusive, re-experiencing of a past traumatic event, isolation from family and friends, emotional numbing, hyper-arousal, avoidance of triggers (distressing memories, thoughts, feelings or external reminders of the event), Negative thoughts & mood.

 

BIRTH TRAUMA:

An event occurring during the labor and delivery process that involves actual or threatened serious injury or death to the mother or her infant. the birthing woman experiences intense fear, loss of dignity, helplessness, loss of control & horror.

-PTSD Due to traumatic labor & delivery can conclude an avoidance of aftercare, impaired mother-infant bonding, PTSD in partner who witnessed birth, sexual dysfunction, avoidance of further pregnancies, exacerbation in future pregnancies, elective c sections in future pregnancies

READ MORE ABOUT BIRTH TRAUMA, PTSD & RESOURCES

 

POST PARTUM PSYCHOSIS:

-1-2 in 1,000 post partum women will develop psychosis.

-of those women: 5% commit suicide and 4% infanticide

-usually occurs within the first 3 weeks after delivery

Symptoms include: Delusions (ex. baby is possessed by a demon), hallucinations, insomnia, confusion/ disorientation, rapid mood swings, waxing and waning (can appear to be normal in between symptoms). 

-www.app-network.org (collaborative network project run by women who have experienced PP themselves)

If you or someone you know suspects that you may be suffering from Post Partum Psychosis, PLEASE ask for help immediately! This is a life threatening disease that requires immediate attention!