5 myths about postpartum depression & anxiety, debunked
- Postpartum depression & anxiety is not the Baby Blues
Up to 80% of women will experience Baby Blues, a few days of sadness that occurs shortly after birth. The majority of these new moms will quickly recover without any extra help. Postpartum depression and anxiety is a much more difficult condition to overcome.
- Postpartum depression and anxiety does not make moms hurt their children
The media sometimes brings us stories of mothers who “snap” and do unspeakable things to their children, which is sometimes then falsely attributed to postpartum depression & anxiety. Rather, these women are often suffering from postpartum psychosis
Postpartum psychosis a very rare condition that affects less than 0.1% of new moms. Postpartum psychosis occurs when the mother loses touch with reality and is always a medical emergency.
- Being horrified by scary thoughts of harm, death or doom is not a sign that you will harm your child
For some women, a symptom of their PPD/A includes intrusive thoughts, scary thoughts where they envision themselves harming their baby either on purpose or accidentally. These women are no more likely to harm their child than anyone else. They are horrified to be having these thoughts and want them to stop.
- Postpartum depression & anxiety happens to women from all walks of life
PPD/A doesn’t discriminate. It can happen to women who have no history of mental health issues, to women who are successful in many aspects of their lives, and to women who were looking forward to becoming mothers. Did you know that Brooke Shields, Alanis Morissette, Sarah McLachlan, Gwyneth Paltrow, along with many other celebrity moms all experienced PPD/A?
- You will get better
Some women will bounce back from PPD/A in a matter of months. Others may have a longer journey ahead of them, filled with relapses or times of struggle. With the proper support and skills, every woman can feel better. No matter how dark your life may seem right now, you will feel happy again.