“The Yellow Wallpaper,” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, tells the story of a woman’s descent into madness as a result of postpartum psychosis. Postpartum psychosis is a condition that affects between one and two of every thousand live births. The condition of postpartum psychosis usually begins within two weeks of giving birth and sometimes within a matter of days. (“Depression”, 2009)
Postpartum depression, which is the most prevalent of all maternal depressive disorders, is said to be the hidden epidemic of the 21st century. (1) Despite its high prevalence rate of 10-15% and increased incidence, postpartum depression often goes undetected, and thus untreated. (2) Nearly 50% of postpartum depression cases are untreated. As a result, these cases are put at a high risk of being exposed to the severe and progressive nature of their depressive disorder. (3) In other words, the health conditions of untreated postpartum depression cases worsen and progress to one of their utmost stages, and they are: postpartum obsessive compulsive disorder, postpartum panic disorder, postpartum post traumatic stress, and postpartum psychosis.
Often the time after birth is a filled with joy and happiness due to the arrival of a new baby. However, for some mothers the birth of a baby leads to some complicated feelings that are unexpected. Up to 85% of postpartum woman experience a mild depression called “baby blues” (Lowdermilk, Perry, Cashion, & Alden, 2012). Though baby blues is hard on these mothers, another form of depression, postpartum depression, can be even more debilitating to postpartum woman. Postpartum depression affects about 15% (Lowdermilk et al., 2012) of postpartum woman. This disorder is not only distressing to the mother but to the whole family unit. This is why it is important for the nurse to not only recognize the signs and symptoms of a mother with postpartum depression, but also hopefully provide preventative care for the benefit of everyone involved.
“Postpartum psychosis is a severe psychotic syndrome that is estimated to occur after 1.1 to 4 of every 1000 deliveries. More than half of the affected women meet diagnostic criteria for major depression” (Weissman and Olfson 800). Postpartum depression is a further common mental illness than postpartum psychosis, however Margery Kempe displays serious symptoms. Several readers believe that Margery Kempe was a woman who devoted her life to God, however, after her first child was born Margery Kempe was recognizably sick due to the feelings that she should not live. In The Book of Margery Kempe, the first autobiography in the English Language, Margery Kempe displays the symptoms of hallucinations, crying episodes, and depression to show that she has postpartum psychosis.
Postpartum depression is one of the most commons disorders in the early few weeks of child birth. According to the American Psychology Association almost 1 in 7 women are Likely to inherit the disorder. Postpartum depression is caused by the rapid drop of estrogen and progestrone hormone following the birth of a child. The effects include excessive crying without reasoning, irritability, anxiety, loss of memory, and the inability to focus. Within the early weeks of child birth it is expected for a mother embrace her baby however; The symptoms of postpartum depression can cause intrusive thoughts that can harm both mother and child. Many women suffer from the postpartum due to the lack of a support system. It is likely that if a mother doesn't
Postpartum depression is one of the most common complications of childbearing with an estimated prevalence of 19.2% in the first three months after delivery (1). Depressive episodes (major and mild) may be experienced by approximately half of women during the first postpartum year (1). Characterized by depressed mood, loss of pleasure or interest in daily activities, feelings of worthlessness and guilt, irritability, sleep and eating disturbances (2), its etiology is multi-faceted and complex (3;4).
According to Dupey “postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis are two separate conditions. Postpartum depression the mom knows that she is struggling but does not lose touch with reality. With postpartum psychosis the mom is dealing with anxiety, depression, and a complete break from reality. Knowing the difference between the two is important that family and providers recognize the difference (2014, para.12)”. When doctors do not recognize the difference and is treating the new mom for postpartum depression instead of psychosis, the end results can be harmful for the mother. The rate of mothers harming their children or commit suicide has increased over time. More states would benefit to have more faculties that deal with women
The Center for Disease Control estimates that 1 in 20 people suffer from depression (2014). Although widely recognized and somewhat easy to diagnose, depression is an ignored and almost hidden, disease. In women, the statistics are especially grim for those who are pregnant or were recently pregnant. A great number of women suffer from postpartum depression; an illness which is often overlooked, misdiagnosed and untreated. Postpartum depression (PPD) has been defined as an emotional disorder that occurs in an estimated 10-15% of all women after childbirth (Liberto, 2010). Postpartum depression not only impacts the mother, but can cause long-term psychological challenges for the baby and create emotional turmoil for all family members.
70 to 80 percent of women who have given birth experience what is know as “Baby blues,” (Piotrowski & Benson, 2015). These are mild symptoms of depression and usually go away within two weeks after giving birth. However, the symptoms of unspecified depressive disorder with peripartum onset also known as postpartum depression (PPD) can be more intense and last significantly longer than the “baby blues.” According to the DSM-5 (American Psychiatric Association [APA] 2013), postpartum depression occurs during pregnancy or in the 4 weeks following delivery. Postpartum depression has symptoms that cause clinically significant distress or impairment in the new mothers life and can include the inability to take care of the newborn or herself. The
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
It is a rare illness that occurs in approximately 1 to 2 per 1000 women after childbirth. Its presentation is often dramatic, with onset of symptoms as early as the first 48 to 72 hours after delivery. The majority of women with puerperal psychosis develop symptoms within the first two postpartum weeks. Symptoms of postpartum physics often include delusions or strange beliefs, hallucinations, decreased need for or inability to sleep, paranoia and suspiciousness. The most significant risk factors for postpartum psychosis are a personal or family history of bipolar disorder, or a previous psychotic episode. Postpartum psychosis is different from the baby blues; 70% of new mothers experience the baby blues, which is a short-lasting condition that does not impact their daily functioning and does
Depression is a common problem during and after pregnancy; about thirteen percent of pregnant women and new mothers have depression (Women’s Health, par. 2). According to the National Institute of Mental Health, postpartum depression is defined as a mood disorder that can affect women after childbirth (National Institute of Mental Health, par. 2). Even though the mothers that suffer from postpartum depression often think it is their fault, postpartum depression can happen to any mother. This is because it is a disorder that is out of their control, it is common among many mothers and it is usually caused by a hormonal imbalance.
Postpartum depression has been around for centuries, it was recognized as early as 1500 B.C. However, instead of seeing it as a medical issues it was viewed as witch craft or victims of witch craft. Later on in the 1920s one theory suggested these mood disorders were caused from suppressed homosexuality or incestuous urges. Postpartum depression was not even taught in schools because people believed that it was impossible for a pregnant woman to be depressed because pregnancy/birth of a child was a joyous occasion. Now fast forward to present day and postpartum depression is well known and is taken very seriously. Recent studies show that within the first year of giving birth one in five woman have experienced postpartum depression.
Mothers who have brought into this world a blessing have been preparing themselves for a big change in their life. They have been learning and educating themselves about how to be a good mother. Many mothers find it really hard to transition from being an independent woman without children to becoming a mother (Corrigan, Kwasky, & Groh, 2015). Adapting to motherhood can be a drastic change, and usually creates challenges that lead to feeling overwhelmed (Leger & Letourneau, 2015). When a newly mother begins experiencing stress or becomes emotional then there can be a possibility that they can encounter Postpartum Depression (Leger et al., 2015). Postpartum depression can be seen and experienced in many different ways, it all varies on every mother (Corrigan et al., 2015). Many different mental health issues can be seen including baby blues, postpartum depression, postpartum obsessive-compulsive disorder, and the most serious, postpartum psychosis (Tam & Leslie, 2001).