Postpartum Depression Essay examples

1253 Words Sep 17th, 2008 6 Pages
Introduction When a woman gives birth to a child, it can be one of the most joyous and exciting moments in her life, yet it can also be difficult and stressful. There are a range of emotional, behavioral, and physical changes that occur shortly after a woman gives birth. These changes are common; however, many women who experience these emotions may have postpartum depression, with symptoms ranging from mild to severe. Many women require medical treatment. Although all causes of postpartum depression are unknown, there are many factors that can put a woman at risk. This essay provides an overview of postpartum depression, the impact it has on the individual client, the newborn, and the family, the physical and mental assessment …show more content…
The impact of postpartum depression causes a mother to frequently feel exhausted, emotionally empty, and guilty because she cannot show love to her baby. The mother feels overwhelmed by feelings of harming her baby and may lack the emotional energy to relate to her newborn, which prevents her from perceiving the baby’s attempts to communicate. Depressed mothers are less likely to play with, read to, or even breastfeed their baby and tend to be inconsistent in their care causing a disruption in the bonding process. Many mothers are embarrassed to get help out of shame. Postpartum depression also has an extremely high impact on the newborn. Katja Gaschler (2008) states, “three-month-old infants of depressed mothers look at their mothers less often and show fewer signs of positive emotion than do babies of mentally healthy mothers” (p. 65). Postpartum depression during the first few months of life may also cause negative effects on a child’s development including: social problems (difficulty establishing relationships, social withdrawal, and acting out destructively); behavioral problems (temper tantrums, sleep problems, hyperactivity, and aggression); cognitive problems (walking and talking late and learning difficulties); and emotional problems (low self-esteem and anxiety). The family as a whole is also greatly impacted by
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