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Angela Rhydderch Counselling Service

 
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telephone: 01483 429567 07714 203500

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Post Natal Depression (PND)

Post Natal Depression is now a well recognised and treatable illness which, in varying degrees of seriousness affects about one in five mothers. Indeed recent research by the Royal College of Midwives suggests that Post Natal Depression could be much more common than previously thought as many women are too afraid to ask for help and therefore hide their symptoms.

Post Natal depression can affect anyone and usually develops about six to eight weeks after giving birth, although it can start sooner.  It can start during the later stages of pregnancy in which case it is called Ante Natal Depression. A recent survey showed that, of mothers who went on to develop PND, 63 per cent said they had sometimes felt sad and tearful, 57 per cent were very anxious about the pregnancy and birth and 22 per cent felt depressed or very sad whilst pregnant.

Unfortunately PND is often is not recognised or diagnosed until long after the initial symptoms. The most frequent signs and symptoms of PND are anxiety, low mood, being unable to look forward to anything, a lack of motivation, extreme tiredness and panic attacks. Some women describe having the feeling of being in a fog or of having a woolly head and that they feel very different to how they felt before. Whilst it is quite normal for many new mothers to feel extremely tired, but when combined with other symptoms which are causing stress or problems, these may be signs of PND.

Puerperal Psychosis

This is an even more serious condition than Post Natal Depression. It affects about one in a thousand new mothers and usually occurs within six weeks after delivery. The symptoms may include hallucinations, delusions and other erratic and out of character behaviour. This is often first noticed by partners or family members. This is a very serious condition which usually requires treatment in hospital initially.

It is essential to speak to your GP or health visitor and to tell them your symptoms. They are usually the gateway to obtaining professional help.

Professional Help - The GP and The Health Visitor

It is important for a woman with Post Natal Depression to see her Doctor. Tell the Doctor all your symptoms, as this will help him or her to correctly diagnose the illness. For some women, just the consultation, and the recognition that there is an illness, is enough and they may not require further treatment. Though forms of treatment may vary, they can involve the use of anti-depressant drugs which are usually extremely useful in aiding recovery. If you are breast feeding, you must inform your Doctor when being prescribed medication.

The Doctor may suggest counselling or may refer you to the Community Mental Health team who should have expertise in this area. Post Natal Depression support groups are also very helpful enabling you to meet other women who are experiencing similar feelings. This will help reduce the feeling of isolation. They can also be of help to a partner whose understanding can make a lot of difference to the speed of recovery.

Health visitors can offer support to mothers, by visiting them in their own home on a regular basis, allowing them to talk about their feelings.

It is important to remember that health professionals are there to help.

You Will Recover

Having had Puerperal Psychosis myself after the birth of my first child I understand how distressing PND can be. Even in the darkest of moments it is important to remind yourself and to be reminded that you will recover fully. I made a full recovery and I went on to have a second child with no re-occurrance.

Click Here to Learn about Treatment Options for P.N.D.


Other Support for Post Natal Depression   

 
The Association for Post Natal Illness - Helpline Tel: (UK) 020 7386 0868
145 Dawes Road, Fulham, London, UK, SW6 7EB
 http://www.apni.org



     To find out more, or to make an appointment, telephone me on
01483 429567 or 07714 203500,  
e-mail me at angela.rhydderch@clara.co.uk or Click here to submit an enquiry

Counselling Godalming, Guildford ,Woking, Farnham, Cranleigh and Haslemere, Waverley, Surrey, including Aldershot and Farnborough, Hampshire ~ A Professional Qualified and Caring Counsellor  ~ Specialising in Anger Management, Bereavement, Post Natal Depression, Depression, School Counselling, Youth, Young People, Teenagers, Parenting and Educational Special Needs ~ Based in Guildford and Godalming, Surrey (U.K.).

  Angela Rhydderch Counselling