After Kikeh was born, his mother, Moremoju struggled to find herself happy. Every day, she went on reminding herself that as a mother her happiness came second. She knew she needed to be there for her child, to sacrifice for him, love him, care for him and to even do more. Surprisingly, she wasn’t willing to do anything.
It was Kikeh six week immunization visit to the hospital so she took him to get vaccinated and examined. Whilst the doctor checked on Kikeh, he asked Moremoju if she has had any unpleasant thoughts concerning Kikeh. “No, I have not, I have been so happy since the day my baby arrived.” She replied, wearing a sad face.
While living the hospital, Moremoju wondered if she should go back and tell the doctor about those nights she needed to sleep but couldn’t because Kikeh would be awake, crying for one need or the other. She wondered if she should tell him about the days she had felt like throwing him against the wall so she’d be free from the huge bondage that seemed to be ruining her life. Fortunately, she never did because she feared that he will report her to the police.
Moremoju’s story is not far fetched from today’s Nigerian single mothers. According to Centers for Disease Control, 11 to 20% of women who give birth each year have postpartum depression symptoms. The World Health Organization reported that about 13% of women worldwide who have just given birth experience a mental disorder, primarily postpartum depression.
Postpartum depression (PPD), also called postnatal depression, is a type of depression a woman may have after childbirth. It can start anytime during the baby’s first year.
Having a new baby is a beautiful thing but often times mothers face a lot of challenges when getting used to life with their newborn.
According to WebMD, one study of 10,000 moms with newborns found that about 1 in 7 get postpartum depression. Luckily, most of those women find that treatment helps.
There is no single reason why some new mothers develop postpartum depression and others don’t, but hormonal changes, physical changes (such as physical pain from the delivery or the difficulty of losing the baby weight), history of depression, and stress are believed to contribute to the problem.
Similar to other types of depression, postpartum depression can include a number of symptoms such as severe mood swings, finding it difficult to bond with your baby, withdrawing from family and friends, feeling angry or irritable, having feelings of anxiety, thoughts of harming yourself or your baby, excessive crying, feeling sad or hopeless, fear that you're not a good mother and more.
A number of factors such as a history of depression prior to becoming pregnant or during pregnancy, age (younger women who are not prepared for a baby), having children of same-sex, poor support from family and living alone can increase the risk of postpartum depression.
There are many lifestyle changes that you can do to help yourself feel better such as exercising, getting enough sleep, eating healthy meals, having supportive family and friends, and asking for help when you need it.
Your doctor might decide to prescribe an antidepressant like FLUTEX for you. This drug help improve mood and feeling of well-being, relieve anxiety and tension. Just be sure to know if it is safe for you while you breastfeed.
Please do not feel ashamed or reluctant to speak out if you are depressed. No one is going to judge you for it, besides, depression is a medical condition that requires treatment, it is not a sign of weakness. Be honest with yourself and those who care about you. Tell them about your struggle, especially your doctor. Talk to him and let him decide what treatment is best for you. #EndDepression #PostpartumDepression #Depression.
Last Updated: 27-Feb-2018 02:42 PM
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