Understanding Postpartum Depression and How can we help
We primates are born with an immediate urge to protect the progeny no matter what species, like hunger and sleep taking over, we don’t have to put efforts in doing it, the emotions take over instantly when a mother hears the news of pregnancy or a father holding an infant for the first time, the brain rushes to regulate the endorphins responsible for that gush of joy, tears in the eyes and care for the little one.
So what is different in some cases where the natural setting is abrupted, the mother instead choses to end lives or abandon her newborn, we may all have come across one such instance at one or the other point in our lives, the answer lies in the same setting of brain where the production of hormones have gone haywire after giving birth, instead of love and affection the new mother feels overwhelmed over-worked and finds it hard to cope with the newfound responsibilities of motherhood, topping it is the ignorance of the society towards the mental health issues and thus the apathy of people surrounding.
Data suggests every 1 woman among 10 new mothers experience various levels of “Postpartum Depression” syndrome, it can be further classified in three categories depending on the degree of severity.
How can we help:
1. Regular workout and healthy diet has shown significant improvement in “postpartum depression” cases, by workout here we don’t refer to strenuous workouts, a simple yoga regime, brisk walks or a jog depending on individual’s physical strength is good to go.
2. As friends & family we must be sensitive and vigilant not just towards the newborn but also the new mother, look out for signs like frequent breakdowns, excessive irritability, mood swings, in case we notice these red flags try talking to the new mom.
3. Caregivers be it the Mother, Doctor or a distant relative, needs to understand and acknowledge the fact that motherhood does have a other side to it, its “not all rosy” as mostly portrayed and the same needs to be conveyed especially to the “first time mums”.
Note to the first time Mums
You are about to experience the most joyous moments of your life, true meaning of “selfless love”, your own capabilities of a wonder woman you ones thought was impossible however don’t forget yourself as somebody rightly said “you can’t pour from an empty cup” take care of yourself, only a happy mother can have a happy child and lastly ask for help if needed don’t shy away from talking, if ever your gut feeling says “that something isn’t right” talk to someone you trust or counselor if needed.