The Myth of Antenatal Depression
Antenatal Depression Symptoms are often overlooked. A pregnant woman who feels overwhelmed and anxious for more than two weeks and can not function in daily activities may be suffering from Antenatal depression. The risk factors for developing Antenatal depression are listed below. Approximately half of women with this kind of depression will develop postnatal depression later. (I will discuss in detail about Postnatal Depression in my next Article)
I have found as someone who specializes in the health of women that reality can be very different. Depending on the static you look at, anywhere up to 15% of women suffer from depression at any time. This includes women in the Antenatal period.
One patient I worked with described her experience of Antenatal depression:
“I would do everything possible to take care of my first child during the day, to fall exhausted on the sofa after going to bed at 7 p.m. I could only watch the clock creep slowly ticking until my husband arrived home at 9 p.m. Then, delegate the responsibility of our daughter to him. I could not bear to look at him or talk to him, I did not want him to feel or see the darkness I felt inside. “This lady went on to suffer from postnatal depression.”
The common symptoms of Antenatal depression are:
- Tired but can not sleep, with a too active and worrying mind.
- No appetite or comfort / overeating.
- Agoraphobia, that is, fear of open spaces.
- Weeping more than what is usually experienced or expected in pregnancy.
- Feeling isolated and lonely.
- Chronic anxiety and stress.
- Obsessive compulsive behavior e.g. Wash your hands repeatedly.
- Lack of interest in anything or concern with pregnancy.
It is vital that health professionals who work with pregnant women ask them what they really look like. Due to concerns about stigma and the belief that “it should be fine”, women do not always feel able to talk about what is happening to them. If a woman confesses to feeling bad, it is essential that the professional asks her if she has had any thoughts of ending her own life or hurting herself. I have discovered that many women have felt a sense of relief, a feeling that they are being taken seriously which opens up the door of conversation about how they should be helped with extent of time. ‘ So Feel Them Important and Never Turn Your Face Off ‘.
Women who suffer from Antenatal depression deserve unconditional love and support. There are alternatives to medication, such as yoga, mindfulness and a healthy diet. One can visualize that her pregnancy is going well and look for information about pregnancies that go well. Empowering moms with positive approach/materials to have an excellent pregnancy is the best in her benefit and for her new born baby.. ‘Be Compassionate and Lead Your Attitude with Loving Approach’
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