Every woman feels great pleasure and contentment during pregnancy. But, this magnificent experience may be marred by some unsettling mental condition or call it depression for many women. The study shows depression and pregnancy are very intrinsic features in approximately 14-23% women.
How can you identify Depression during pregnancy?
Prenatal depression can differ from person to person, and some obvious signs of depression are a feeling of hopelessness, sadness, low self-esteem, anxiety, insomnia, mood swings, difficulty in concentration and many others. Sometimes, women feel isolated from friends and family during pregnancy.
Causes of antenatal depression:
There is no particular reason to incur depression during pregnancy and it could be physical, emotional, and/or some social matters can also disturb you. Here, we will go to discuss three major factors that may cause depression among pregnant women:
1. Prenatal depression due to physical causes
Feeling of morning sickness, dizziness, nausea, walking with extra weight and feeling exhausted and tired after covering a little distance are very common in pregnancy. Experiencing pain in lower abdomen and going for frequent urination can be a cause of frustration. Even carrying a heavy head and getting annoyed to wear large-sized tops and pajamas, and other petty things could pull anyone towards depression. Some physical symptoms are also identified during pregnancy, such as:
- Hormonal changes: The hormonal changes are increased by 30-50% during pregnancy, which can raise swelling of breast, legs, morning sickness, pelvic pain; all these can start the feeling of depression in women.
- Thyroid: Thyroid level can oscillate during pregnancy and cause depression.
- Nausea: Nausea is a very common condition that happens due to hormonal imbalance in almost every woman. Some women feel nausea only in the initial months of pregnancy while some experience it throughout nine months.
2. Prenatal depression due to emotional causes
Bringing a new life into the world is always an emotional experience for every woman. In such a situation, any little change or negative behavior of friends and relatives could provoke depression in women.
Previous miscarriages or feeling of unhealthy birth can also lead to depression and fear among women. If a woman is terrified with the birth conditions, a feeling that there is something wrong with baby or she will never be a good mother or her husband will leave her – all these insecurities could also make her emotionally depressed.
3. Prenatal depression due to social causes
Pressure from old generations with an attitude that we didn’t go through prenatal depression and instructions about ‘What to do or what not’ will always be the cause of depression. In India, there are still many women who feel the pressure of delivering a boy and abort female fetus, which could also precipitate the mental tension among women.
Treatments for depression during pregnancy:
The study shows that those women who don’t discuss their mental or physical illness and health issues with someone, not even with doctors, out of shame or guilt cause preterm delivery, low birth weight and delay development of a baby. So, it’s a suggestion to every pregnant woman that they must talk about their mental condition with doctors or health care providers who will help them to cope with the situation. Doctors suggest that psychological therapies are more beneficial over medicines.
Psychological therapy Psychological therapies include talk therapy, light therapy, medication and acupuncture, which reduce the depression to a great extent.
- Talk therapy – It can help to dust negative attitude and replace with a positive behavior.
- Light therapy – In light therapy, patients are exposed to high-intensity light to regulate hormone in the brain.
- Acupuncture – Acupuncture helps to reduce morning sickness, headaches and sleep problems. It also reduces back and pelvic pain among women.
- Meditation – Doing yoga and some light exercises can get women to get rid of mental pain and depression.
If the depression has reached to a severe level and psychological therapies are not providing any relief then you can switch to antidepressant medication, but you must consult a doctor before taking medication.
Other ways to get relief from depression:
The best way to help you from depression is to take care of yourself physically and emotionally and keep prenatal depression as distant as possible.
- Take proper rest – Stress is a major issue for depression that’s why you have to take proper rest, take small breaks during work, read books, enjoy music and do other activities which make you feel calm and relax.
- Share your feelings – Talk about your problems and issues with your better half, friends and family and even with other pregnant women in order to exchange your views.
- Balanced diet & Nutrition – Eat a balanced diet full of iron, calcium, proteins and minerals on-time. Depression and pregnancy both can be handled well with a good diet that has miraculous effects on the heath.
- Physical fitness – Doing exercise, yoga, swimming and morning or evening walk will give you relaxation from stressConclusion:
After talking about anxiety and depression during pregnancy, we can conclude that physical and emotional changes are very natural in this phase, but women must have a positive attitude to cope up. They must discuss their problems with experts, family members and friends to resolve all issues. Intake of proper pregnancy diet is also very important and women can also join a support group of other pregnant women facing a similar situation that will make them feel better.