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Postpartum Mental Health

you are not alone.

​*Postpartum depression (also called PPD) is not your fault.  

*It’s a medical condition that needs treatment to get better.

*Many women have PPD after having a baby.

*It’s the most common problem for new moms.

*If you think you have PPD, tell your provider.

*PPD can make it hard for you to take care of yourself and your baby.

*If you have signs or symptoms of PPD, talk to your provider about


*Certain kinds of counseling can help prevent depression. If you’re at risk for depression, talk to your provider about finding a counselor.

Visit the resources linked below for more information, as well as access to immediate help if needed.

Check our Partners page for additional local resources.

mental health postpartum depression maternal mental health postpartum support

Baby Blues

Most new moms experience postpartum "baby blues" after childbirth, which commonly include mood swings, crying spells, anxiety and difficulty sleeping. Baby blues usually begin within the first 2 to 3 days after delivery and may last for up to two weeks.

Symptoms of baby blues — which last only a few days to a week or two after your baby is born — may include:

  • Mood swings

  • Anxiety

  • Sadness

  • Irritability

  • Feeling overwhelmed

  • Crying

  • Reduced concentration

  • Appetite problems

  • Trouble sleeping


Postpartum depression may be mistaken for baby blues at first — but the symptoms are more intense and last longer. These may eventually interfere with your ability to care for your baby and handle other daily tasks. Symptoms usually develop within the first few weeks after giving birth. But they may begin earlier — during pregnancy — or later — up to a year after birth.

Postpartum depression symptoms may include:

  • Depressed mood or severe mood swings

  • Crying too much

  • Difficulty bonding with your baby

  • Withdrawing from family and friends

  • Loss of appetite or eating much more than usual

  • Inability to sleep, called insomnia, or sleeping too much

  • Overwhelming tiredness or loss of energy

  • Less interest and pleasure in activities you used to enjoy

  • Intense irritability and anger

  • Fear that you're not a good mother

  • Hopelessness

  • Feelings of worthlessness, shame, guilt or inadequacy

  • Reduced ability to think clearly, concentrate or make decisions

  • Restlessness

  • Severe anxiety and panic attacks

  • Thoughts of harming yourself or your baby

  • Recurring thoughts of death or suicide

Untreated, postpartum depression may last for many months or longer.


Postpartum psychosis

With postpartum psychosis — a rare condition that usually develops within the first week after delivery — the symptoms are severe.


Symptoms may include:

  • Feeling confused and lost

  • Having obsessive thoughts about your baby

  • Hallucinating and having delusions

  • Having sleep problems

  • Having too much energy and feeling upset

  • Feeling paranoid

  • Making attempts to harm yourself or your baby

Postpartum psychosis may lead to life-threatening thoughts or behaviors and requires immediate treatment.

maternal mental health conditions can show up at any time.

Only a doctor or trained mental health professional can diagnose you or prescribe treatments. If you're wondering whether you need treatment for maternal mental health conditions, call your primary care physician ASAP--don't wait. 

Below, some Stork Ready moms have shared their struggles with their own mental health challenges. If any of these sound like experiences you've had, get yourself checked with your doctor. Don't wait.


A warning that some of the testimonials may be triggering. 

I remember taking a shower and crying for what didn’t feel like any clear reason and recognizing that I felt so out of control of my emotions and I wasn’t myself. My baby had some feeding/nursing issues and I remember being so anxious I lost my appetite, which in turn made me more anxious I wasn’t eating enough to keep up my milk supply. I had intrusive thoughts and was really worried about SIDS and had trouble sleeping in the rare moments when he actually slept.

What It Felt Like:

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