by Jessica Hedgepeth, BHT
As a pregnant or new mom, you may be experiencing emotions that are sometimes overwhelming to you or seem to come out of no where. You may feel very happy or overjoyed at times and then at other times find yourself crying out of no where. You may not feel like yourself sometimes and wonder if what your feeling is normal.
Many of us have heard the term “baby blues” and have been told that this is a normal thing for pregnant or new moms experience. But, what are baby blues? How do you know if that is what you are feeling? What is the difference between baby blues and pregnancy or postpartum depression?
A mom with baby blues may notice her mood fluctuates and she becomes tearful at times, however, she is able to feel happiness or contentment as well. Her self esteem is normal and her sleeping patterns are normal. She may be tired from getting up at night or awaking with her newborn, but she is able to fall asleep regularly and feels more rested when we awakens. A mom experiencing baby blues does not think about harming herself or her baby. She may feel anxious, restless, or irritable at times, but these feelings come and go. They are not persistent.
A mom with pregnancy or postpartum depression is consistently sad or listless. She has difficulty enjoying things she once enjoyed. She may withdraw her self from others or just feel isolated and alone. She does not feel happy often. A mom with depression has low self esteem and irregular sleep patterns. She doesn’t feel energized after resting and may experience suicidal thoughts. Depression can also cause an overwhelmingly feeling of worry or dread. A pregnant or postpartum mom with depression feels restless, irritable and impatient persistently.
It is estimated that between 70-80% of women experience baby blues, but these symptoms shouldn’t last for longer than a period of two weeks. If these feelings persist, there is a likelihood of depression. It is important for you to realize you are not alone in your feelings and there are professionals who specialize in the treatment of pregnant and postpartum women. Please call our office for a free consultation to discuss your symptoms and see if you might benefit from counseling for pregnancy or postpartum depression at our office in Mesa, AZ.