Getting a new member in the family is a tedious task. New parents are constantly on their toes, trying to do the best possible things for that little human as per the knowledge available to them. Feeding, changing diapers, cleaning, bathing, putting to sleep, singing lullabies.... Phew!! Imagining the efforts, they make from day one is making me sweat already. OH MY GOD!
However, sometimes while doing all these efforts, a new mom may forget paying attention to herself. According to the data, most mothers develop ‘baby blues’ after childbirth which, in some cases, progresses to a serious condition called Post Partum depression.
The symptoms of these two may look similar initially but they are different in terms of severity. Here are 5 similarities and 5 differences between the two which you can look out for to begin intervention:
- Mood fluctuations: Being too overwhelmed of a new member’s presence that you are either crying over little things or getting irritable, impatient, sad or less concentrated on everything.
- Insomnia: You are exhausted yet unable to sleep due to this huge change in your routine because of the addition of a child’s responsibilities.
- Anxiety: You are anxious about not being able to take care of the baby and even feel less to zero attachment to it. You are panicking over everything related to it.
- Appetite loss: You are unable to eat like you used to before due to the constant worrying and anxiety associated with the baby.
- Feeling of loneliness, vulnerability and confusion.
- While baby blues last for 2-10 days post-delivery, postpartum depression (PPD) may last much longer. In some cases, it may even begin after a year of giving birth. Baby blues is more of mixed feelings but PPD is frustration, terrible mood swings with sadness and no-will to look after the child.
- Baby blues does not let the mother bond with the child immediately but gradually. In PPD, the mother is never able to feel attached to the child, even not after days.
- Baby blues make mothers worry about little things about the baby. They feel vulnerable and seek help from family in taking care of the child while in PPD, mothers’ question if they are ‘worthy’ of being moms and feel left out from family.
- Mothers with baby blues don’t posses self harm tendencies. However, moms with PPD develop self harm or harming the baby thoughts.
- Since baby blues resolve gradually over 10 days, it does not require medical help. PPD, on the other hand, is a severe condition that should not be overlooked. Consulting a doctor for antidepressants or therapy is the key.
Keep an eye open for such symptoms. A stitch in time saves nine!