Depression During Pregnancy
For most women pregnancy is a very emotional experience. Great changes in your body and your hormones can cause anxiety, stress, mood swings, emotional highs and also lows. However, 1 in 10 women suffers from actual depression during pregnancy.
Unlike the typical mood swings and other emotional symptoms of pregnancy that most women experience, women with depression during pregnancy experience much more extreme feelings of anxiety and stress than most other women.
If you are experiencing abnormal levels of depression, you should seek some treatment. It is not only important for you, but also for the health of your unborn baby.
In this article, I will continue into detail on the subject of pregnancy depression, including its symptoms, impact and available treatment.
What Causes Depression During Pregnancy?
Many pregnant women never deal with their depression because they believe it is just part of the overall rollercoaster of emotions that women experience during childbirth. Although emotional highs and lows are symptoms, which most women experience, severe depression is only evident in 10% of pregnant women.
It was once believed that the hormones caused depression during pregnancy were useful in stopping depression. However, in many instances, this is not the case. The spike in hormones can, in some cases, lead to a disturbance in the biochemistry of the brain. This is what causes depression in many expectant women.
What Are The Symptoms Of Pregnancy Depression?
Depression can often be a hard condition to diagnose because the symptoms of depression during pregnancy are also symptoms that most pregnant women without depression have.
These may include the following signs:
- Lack of Concentration & Focus: Women who suffer from pregnancy depression may have an extreme lack of content and focus. Even with the simplest tasks.
- Loss of Interest: Many extremely depressed pregnant women lack any interest, even in things which they enjoy.
They struggle to find motivation even to do the simplest things.
- Fatigue: Fatigue is a prevalent symptom of pregnancy, in the first trimester especially. However, if you are so tired that you cannot function normally, then you may be experiencing more than normal pregnancy symptoms.
- Extreme Emotions: If you are feeling different emotions in extreme levels then you might very well be suffering from depression brought on by pregnancy. Examples include extreme bouts of sadness, anger, crying, etc.
- Feeling hopeless: If you are experiencing feelings of extreme guilt and hopelessness for no apparent reason, you may be suffering from depression.
- No Appetite: Morning sickness can cause a lack of appetite, but otherwise most pregnant women have good tastes. If you have completely lost interest in eating, then you may be depressed. This is a good reason to talk to your doctor.
- Constant Anxiety & Panic Attacks: If you are suffering from panic attacks brought on by constant feelings of extreme anxiety then it is best you consult your doctor. Anxiety about your baby is normal, but a continuous intense sense of fear is not.
What Are The Risks?
If you are experiencing severe forms of depression during pregnancy, then you should seek treatment right away.
Depression can not only cause you emotional damage, but it can also cause bodily harm to you and your baby. Depression can increase the chances of miscarriage or other complications. It can also severely damage your relationships with loved ones and also destroy the joy that you should be feeling from having a child.