Postpartum Depression

In the United States alone:

  • Approximately 75% to 85% of women will experience, at a minimum, the “Baby Blues”. This is very common and normal.
  • Many will develop a more severe condition of postpartum depression.
  • The reported rate of postpartum depression among new mothers is between 10% to 20%.
  • One recent study found that 1 in 7 women may experience postpartum depression in the year after giving birth.
  • Given the roughly 4 million live births annually in the United States, this translates to nearly 600,000 women experiencing postpartum depression.

Baby blues symptoms

Signs and symptoms of baby blues which usually last a few days to a week or two after your baby is born may include:

  • Mood swings
  • Mild Irritability
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Trouble sleeping or a restless sleep
  • Brief crying spells
  • Reduced concentration
  • Appetite fluctuations

Postpartum depression symptoms

Postpartum depression can initially resemble baby blues, but its signs and symptoms are typically more severe and enduring. It may eventually impede your capacity to tend to your baby’s needs, including breastfeeding or attending well-care pediatrician appointments. Symptoms typically emerge within the first few weeks postpartum, although onset can occur earlier during pregnancy or up to a year after childbirth. The condition is often influenced by significant biological factors, driven by hormonal changes in dopamine, prolactin, and estrogen.

  • Postpartum depression signs and symptoms may include:
  • Difficulty bonding with your baby
  • Fear that you’re not a good mother or can’t take care of your baby
  • Withdrawing from your baby
  • Excessive or uncontrollable crying
  • Withdrawing from family and friends
  • Loss of appetite
  • Inability to sleep (insomnia) or sleeping too much (hypersomnia)
  • Overwhelming fatigue
  • Intense irritability and anger
  • Hopelessness
  • Feelings of worthlessness or being inadequate
  • Diminished ability to think clearly, focus, concentrate or make decisions
  • Thoughts of harming yourself or your baby
  • Thoughts of death or even suicide


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