Post-partum depression - Poem, Screening and basic information
Updated: Dec 1, 2022
I entered motherhood with a plan in place..
To embrace my miracle, every hardship to face..
His toothless grin has upturned my life..
To make dusk meet dawn I do strive..
All day long he babbles, laughs and cries..
I binge to cope and think of the untraveled miles..
Feed, change, sleep, Repeat- that’s how it sums up..
I give up so often and have to pick myself up..
It took months to begin, how am I unready..
Days are so chaotic I long for the steady..
Gifts amass, ample blessing and wishes..
Yet all I want is someone to do the dishes..
They say why do you crib others have it tougher..
I have my own battle for me this is rougher..
Am I ungrateful after this bundle of joy..
The apple of my eye, this smart boy..
I want to give up the days pass so slowly..
Please leave me alone yet I feel so lonely..
Talk to me someone, yet I don’t know what to share..
Everyone says they are there, but only I have to care..
Someone hold my baby I need to bathe..
I see good, yet I struggle to keep faith..
With each passing day my buddy, my tear
Your innocent gaze has me caged , my dear
Unconditional love enveloped in limitless fear..
I want to hold him tight, until hope is near..
-Dr Nahid Dave
Most women experience a short period of worry and unhappiness labelled as postpartum blues. This is fairly common almost 70 % of mothers and lasts for 2 weeks or so. Postpartum depression is severe and symptoms persist for more than two weeks.
Postpartum depression can start as soon as childbirth or usually it begins 2 weeks after birth .It affects 15% of women after childbirth and can affect fathers as well. One in 7 women develop postpartum depression.
It is not a result of emotional weakness or character flaw.
There are many reasons that can increase the risk i.e history of depressive episodes, hormonal changes, sleep deprivation, genetic susceptibility, preterm births, stress, low income, lack of social support, etc
Symptoms ( More than 2 weeks)
- Mood swings
- Hopeless, helpless, worthless
- Guilt, shame, exhaustion
- Self harm or suicidal ideas
- Lack if interest
- Poor self care
- Social withdrawal
- Irritability, anger
- Lower libido
- Cannot function and cope with everyday situations
- Anxious, scared and panicked most part of the day
- Sleep disturbance
- Post partum depression affects the maternal-infant bonding and adversely affects short-term and long-term development of child.
The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale
- Standardised self report questionnaire
- If score more than 13, further investigations are required.
Link for screening
Depending on the severity of the illness psychotherapy or medications will be advised.
Moderate to severe illness may require a combination of both.
Dr Nahid Dave