Navigating Postpartum Depression

Welcoming a new life into the world is a miraculous journey, but for some mothers, the transition into motherhood can be accompanied by unexpected challenges. Postpartum depression (PPD) affects many new mothers, regardless of how prepared or excited they felt before giving birth. It’s crucial to understand that PPD is not a reflection of your ability to be a good mother or your love for your baby. It’s a real medical condition that requires support and treatment.

Postpartum depression can manifest in various ways, including:

  • Overwhelming sadness
  • Persistent feelings of anxiety or hopelessness
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty bonding with your baby
  • Changes in appetite or sleep patterns
  • Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed

It’s essential to recognize these symptoms and seek help if you’re experiencing them. You are not alone, and there are resources available to support you through this challenging time.

Navigating Postpartum Depression

Navigating through postpartum depression can feel like trying to find your way through a dense fog. It’s okay to feel lost and overwhelmed, but please know that there is hope and support available to help you through this challenging time.

Start by being gentle with yourself and acknowledging that it’s okay to not be okay. Take each day, each moment, as it comes, and try to focus on small victories and moments of joy, no matter how fleeting they may seem. Surround yourself with understanding and supportive people who can offer a listening ear and a shoulder to lean on. Consider reaching out to a therapist who can support your during this journey and explore ways of reconnecting to yourself and with your child(ren) and partner. 

Therapy can provide a safe space for you to explore your feelings and develop coping strategies to manage your symptoms.

Prioritizing Self-Care

Self-care is essential for your well-being and that of your baby, even when it feels impossible to prioritize your own needs amidst the demands of caring for a newborn. Remember that taking care of yourself is not selfish; it’s necessary.

Try to carve out moments of peace and relaxation, even if it’s just a few minutes to take a deep breath, go for a short walk, or indulge in a warm cup of tea. Practice mindfulness and self-compassion, and be kind to yourself, even on difficult days. Consider enlisting the help of friends and family members to give you breaks and support you in your self-care routine.

Where to Get Support

You don’t have to navigate through postpartum depression alone. In addition to our therapists at PsychSolutions, there are many community supports available to you, including:

Postpartum Depression Support Group at Lois Hole Hospital for Women

Location: 10240 Kingsway NW, Edmonton, AB T5H 3V9

Phone: (780) 735-5000

Postpartum Support Services at Alberta Health Services

Location: Various locations across Edmonton

Phone: 811 (Health Link) 

Website: https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/services/page15072.aspx

Postpartum Support International 

Phone: 800-944-4PPD (4773)

References:

https://www.marchofdimes.org/find-support/topics/postpartum/postpartum-depression

https://www.npr.org/2020/01/27/800139124/what-is-postpartum-depression-recognizing-the-signs-and-getting-help

PsychSolutions

PsychSolutions

PsychSolutions provides services for trauma, motor vehicle & workplace injury, bipolar, anxiety, depression, insomnia, suicidal prevention & bereavement, and relationship and parenting difficulties.