Atlanta women's OBGYN confirms that the period after a mother has a baby, she can be filled with countless emotions. You may feel anything from joy to fear to sadness. If your feelings of sadness become severe and start to interfere with your everyday life, you may be experiencing postpartum depression (PPD).
These symptoms usually start within a few weeks of delivery, though they may develop up to six months afterward. There are things you can do at home to help cope with everyday life. Let's dive in.
Exercise when you can
Atlanta women's OBGYN says that researchers in Australia explain that exercise may have an antidepressant effect for women with PPD. In particular, walking with a baby in a stroller might be an easy way to get in some steps and breathe fresh air. Can’t fit in a long exercise session? Try working out for 10 minutes a few times during the day. Simple workouts that you can do without any equipment works.
Maintain a healthy diet
Healthy eating alone won’t cure PPD. Still, getting into the habit of eating nutritious foods can help you feel better and give your body the nutrients you need. Try planning the week’s meals on the weekend and even preparing healthy snacks ahead of time. Think of whole foods, such as chopped carrots and cubed cheese or apple slices and peanut butter, that are easy to grab on the go.
Create time for yourself
Atlanta women's OBGYN says that sometimes, mothers may feel stuck on the couch breastfeeding. Maybe they are feeling overwhelmed by work, household responsibilities, or other children. Instead of dealing with these stresses alone, reach out for help. Take up your mother-in-law on her offer of free babysitting. Let your partner or another trusted adult take the baby for an hour or two.
When to see your doctor
Atlanta women's OBGYN says that although many women experience the “baby blues” in the first several weeks following delivery, PPD is marked by deeper and longer-lasting feelings of sadness and agitation. These feelings can get worse and become chronic depression without medical help.
It’s a good idea to make an appointment with your OBGYN if you notice feelings of depression after birth, especially if they don’t fade after a couple of weeks or get worse with time. Only around 15 percent of women ever seek treatment for their symptoms, despite the importance of treatment. Your doctor can point you in the right direction to get the support you need.
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