It's Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week where we highlight the importance of talking about postpartum depression and anxiety, the importance of screening and intervention and the critical need for supportive legislation and funding around perinatal mental health.
Pop Quiz: What is the most common complication of childbirth?
Answer: Pregnancy and postpartum mood and anxiety disorders.
1 in 7 women will experience pregnancy and postpartum mood disorders with one or more of their pregnancies. That's 15-20% of all pregnancies! But, not all women are screened for postpartum depression and anxiety. And when they are, it's usually at their OBGYN appointment 6 weeks after they give birth...that's roughly 4 weeks after symptoms of postpartum depression and anxiety kick in!
We can do better. YOU deserve better. Having a baby is HARD. And no matter what your Facebook or Instagram friends tell you, it's hard for them too. There is no shame in the simple fact that your body just went through a complete hormonal and physical upheaval and now you're trying to figure out a whole new life with your baby.
Wondering if what your feeling is the "baby blues" or something more? Complete this screening tool for a little more insight. Get a score that concerns or surprised you? Contact a therapist who specializes in maternal mental health so that you can get back to feeling like you again.
Want to learn more about maternal mental health? Check out this fact sheet!
Want to improve MMH screening for pregnant women and families in your area? Talk to your providers about how and when they screen for pregnancy and postpartum mood disorders. Do you need help preparing for that conversation? Do they need help improving their screening process? I'm here to help.