& the Transition to Parenthood
Mood and anxiety disorder definitions, risk factors, and how specialized treatment can help.
What are Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders?
Let's start with a definition from Postpartum Support International:
Perinatal means the period “all around” birth. We use it to mean the period of time all throughout pregnancy as well as the baby’s first year.
You are not alone.
"Women of every culture, age, income level and race can develop perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. Symptoms can appear any time during pregnancy and the first 12 months after childbirth. There are effective and well-researched treatment options to help you recover.
Although the term “postpartum depression” is most often used, there are actually several forms of illness that women may experience, including:
- Depression during Pregnancy & Postpartum
- Anxiety during Pregnancy & Postpartum
- Perinatal Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Postpartum Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Bipolar Mood Disorders (Bipolar I & Bipolar 2)
- Postpartum Psychosis
Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing we will ever do.
Research has identified potential factors for an increased risk of experiencing PMADs.
Some common factors can contribute to mood complications during pregnancy and postpartum, including:
Unplanned or challenging pregnancies
Previous pregnancy losses, fertility struggles, & experiencing the death of a child
A lack of support during pregnancy or the birth
Disappointing or traumatic birth experiences
Mental health challenges prior to pregnancy such as depression, anxiety, or other mood disorders can also increase the odds that a new parent will experience mood complications during pregnancy or postpartum.
...And, there is hope! Treatment from a therapist specializing in PMADs and/or birth trauma is critically important. In addition, emotional support from your support network is crucial.
"Courage is contagious. Every time we choose courage, we make everyone around us a little better and the world a little braver."
Scope of Practice
Lindsey offers clinical and non-clinical support services for the full spectrum of care for birth parents & partners, birth professionals and beyond.
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