Thursday, 07 Nov 2013
 
 
What If I Don't Want Treatment

Most women will get better without any treatment after a period of weeks, months or sometimes longer. However, this can mean a lot of suffering.

Left untreated, postpartum depression can interfere with mother-child bonding and cause family problems. Children of mothers who have untreated postpartum depression are more likely to have behavioral problems, such as sleeping and eating difficulties, temper tantrums and hyperactivity. Delays in language development are more common as well.

Untreated postpartum depression can last up to a year or longer. Sometimes untreated postpartum depression becomes a chronic depressive disorder. Even when treated, postpartum depression increases a woman's risk of future episodes of major depression.

Postpartum depression isn't generally a condition that you can treat on your own — but you can do some things for yourself that build on your treatment plan. In fact, taking good care of yourself can help speed your recovery.

  • Make healthy lifestyle choices. Rest as much as you can. Include physical activity, such as a walk with your baby, in your daily routine. Eat healthy foods — plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Avoid alcohol.
  • Set realistic expectations. Don't pressure yourself to do everything. Scale back your expectations for the perfect household. Do what you can and leave the rest. Ask for help when you need it.
  • Make time for yourself. If you feel like the world is coming down around you, take some time for yourself. Get dressed, leave the house, and visit a friend or run an errand. Or schedule some time alone with your partner.
  • Avoid isolation. Talk with your partner, family and friends about how you're feeling. Ask other mothers about their experiences. Ask your doctor about local support groups for new moms or women who have postpartum depression.

Remember, the best way to take care of your baby is to take care of yourself.

 

*answer taken from www.mayoclinic.com