Women are deemed to be happy during pregnancy, but this is not true always! Falling prey to depression during this phase is utterly easy.
It is already known that they may experience depression after pregnancy, known as postpartum depression. What's new is that this can happen during pregnancy as well. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists reported that it’s possible to be about 14 percent to 23 percent.
Depression during pregnancy is really not talked about enough— 𝑀𝒶𝓂𝒶 𝒞𝓇𝒾𝓈𝓈 (@lilqueencriss) November 11, 2019
Director of psychology services at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, Natalie Dattilo, Ph.D., says, "It is something that we should be closely monitoring in all pregnant women because the tendency to underreport or underrecognize symptoms is also well known."
Pregnancy adds in so many changes to a woman's health; they're often a unique combination of issues that differ not only from woman to woman but also from pregnancy to pregnancy. Both the woman and the doctor often dismiss reasons like no sleep or loss of appetite to be one of these frequent changes. So, many women aren't diagnosed with depression at this stage. Dattilo reminds that equal emphasis should be placed on the mental and physical health of women during pregnancy, but many doctors ignore this and focus on physical health only. And since depression is considered shameful, women themselves hesitate to bring it up with the doctors by themselves.
According to Helen L. Coons, Ph.D., a psychiatry professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Aurora, one of the factors contributing to this cause is a prior history of depression (i.e. if a woman had it in her first pregnancy). The other reasons are a family history of depression, a personal history of anxiety, life stress, past trauma, or medical factors such as complicated pregnancy or societal factors like inadequate support. Unintended pregnancy can also be a cause of depression.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that prolonged sadness, hopelessness, irritability, energy loss, not able to concentrate, little sleep or feeling sleepy and tired perpetually, no hunger, having aches and pains that don't improve with treatment, suicidal thoughts, etc. are some of the probable symptoms of depression. There's a need to consult a doctor if the mood swings are interfering with your daily life. Identify your mood swings and monitor them by gauging your previous self with the current. Your enthusiasm for doing things and maintaining relationships should be analyzed. Once you know about your condition, you should seek help. Treatment is necessary since there's a chance of the baby not developing right due to a lack of self-caring condition.
Tackling mental disorders before they arise in pregnant women and new mothers is an approach that could be scaled up online — and would aid the overall health of populations. https://t.co/enU9m549S9— Nature News & Comment (@NatureNews) November 4, 2019
Furthermore, they may not provide proper care to the baby, fall victim to bad habits, and pose a high risk of postpartum pregnancy. In addition, there may be some trouble bonding with the baby. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and interpersonal therapy (IPT) are currently considered as possible treatments for depression during pregnancy. Though some antidepressants are safe during this time, many people turn towards alternative treatment also.
Regardless of what method(s) you use to treat depression, just know that you're not alone. With the right treatment and support, you'll be able to slowly but surely get better.