Rus Articles Journal

Postnatal depression: illness of our time?

If somebody told Olga what the first several months after the child`s birth she will remember as a bad dream, she just would not believe. Suitable age - 28 years. Successful marriage, the husband very much wanted the child. Nearby there lived mother who could always help. And the main thing - Olga seemed that the family without children is not a family, and the birth of the child was important part of its vital plans.

But when Aleshka was born, Olga felt that the event which brought into such delight of relatives and friends was for it severe test. From a sleep debt the head constantly hurt. Feedings, washing, walk and rocking - all this formed a vicious circle from which she could not escape in any way. And this constant fear for the child - why it so often shouts, maybe, with it something not so? Olga fell into despair, was angry.

young mother felt

In few months such suppressed and oppressed what before she was only at the most critical moments of the life, and that is very short. It was overcome by melancholy and despondency, she often wanted to cry, she flew into a rage and was upset on trifles. And internally Olga accused herself all the time that she is bad mother - she did not test any “all-consuming“ maternal love to the kid, she looked after him out of a debt, with a great effort.

the Family did not understand that happens to it. The husband in response to its tantrums or complaints only swung the head and next day tried to be late longer at work. And mother looked a disapproving look:“ Eh, you in our communal flat on three families. Neither baby food, nor washing machine, nor pampers. And near by …“ But it is easier than any relatives for Olga from such talk disappeared, on the contrary, there was a wish to cry even more. All this proceeded nearly half a year, and then gradually it became easier for it.

Now to Alyosha 4 years, and heavy memoirs were already almost erased at Olga from memory. Here only, when the husband starts talking about the second child, its all time there are reasonable arguments contra - good work which is a pity for losing of a problem with the apartment.

If Olga saw a doctor, then, most likely, would make it the diagnosis “a postnatal depression“. More and more women face similar problems today.

That it “a postnatal depression“?

Feeling of depression, alarm and a devastation, loss of interest in life, irritability (often causeless), feeling of alienation from own child - all this symptoms of a postnatal depression. The woman at the same time has sense of guilt and own inferiority, feels as bad mother. The depression can be followed by loss of appetite and sleeplessness though most often in the first months young mother and so lacks a dream and forces.


statistically, from 10 to 15% of women suffer from a postnatal depression. At every second of them the depression proceeds in a severe form, the American researchers claim. In these cases of the help of the psychologist all-strengthening therapies and supports of close people it can be given insufficiently, and doctors recommend reception of psychotropic drugs - antidepressants.

However not all mothers testing a depression ask for the help - many of them are afraid to admit to strangers and even themselves that the birth of the child became for them a source of burdensome experiences and losses of composure.

B than danger of a postnatal depression? If the woman cannot cope with the state itself and does not receive the necessary help, then the depression can last many months, being gradually aggravated. “It seemed to me that in my life there will nevermore be pleasures“, - Anna who endured a heavy postnatal depression tells.“ I wanted only - to lay down, turn away one to a wall and not to think of anything“. Fortunately, reach a similar condition of the woman rather seldom.

also the fact that the mother`s mood is transferred to the kid Is bad

. The world in which he lives is deprived of pleasure and heat, in it there is more grief, uncertainty and alarm. Many researchers emphasize that the depression of mother can lead to a delay in development of the speech of the child, to problems with concentration of attention. Experts from the Center of mental health of the Russian Academy of Medical Science came to a conclusion that such children are more disturbing, they are less sure of maternal love, their attachments can have neurotic character.

a risk Zone

for the last years the problem of a postnatal depression is one of the “sharpest“ medical subjects in the western countries. Doctors try to understand in what reason of developing of a postnatal depression whether it is possible to predict it and to prevent. However on many questions definite answers are still not found.

the Depression can arise due to various reasons. Among biological - hormonal changes, natural recession of emotions after the delivery, weakness and overfatigue in the first weeks of motherhood. It is possible to refer hereditary predisposition of the woman to emotional frustration, a heavy situation in a family to number of the psychological reasons, feeling of disappointment and unavailability to those changes which are brought by motherhood.

However not always difficulties can lead

to developing of a postnatal depression. Often happens that they, on the contrary, will mobilize mother, force it to rise a breast in defense of the child. And those women to whom the destiny, apparently, gave all opportunities for quiet and safe motherhood after the birth of the child plunge into deep melancholy.

the Postnatal depression is most often not connected by

with material difficulties. The rich and socially successful women can endure it. So, for example, the princess Diana, many movie stars and the priest - stars suffered from a heavy postnatal depression.

doctors are not able to Define exact “algorithm which leads to developing of an illness yet.

Other question on which scientists did not receive a certain answer - why the postnatal depression gained such distribution today?

Of course, this illness is not “invention“ of our time. In the 4th century BC the Greek doctor Hippocrates wrote that some women after the birth of the child have mental disorders. And in Britain at the time of the Queen Victoria said about the young mothers showing symptoms of a sincere disease that they were captured by “postnatal madness“, and placed such women in a madhouse. However earlier similar diseases were a rarity, an exception to the rules; in one historical source it is not said that suffered from them every tenth, or every eighth woman.

the Invention of washing machines, pampers and baby food made by

care of the child incomparably easier, than earlier. The last decades brought big achievements in areas which concern treatment of physical diseases of mother and the child. All this, however, were not reflected on sincere health of mothers in any way.

It is possible that one of the reasons that the postnatal depression becomes “an illness of our time“, is covered in features of a modern way of life.

the General intense and often exhausting rhythm of our existence does

the person to more vulnerable. And sharp change of priorities which happened for the last 100 years forces the woman “to run around“ like a mad in the aspiration to promote, reach independence, to self-actualize and give rise and bring up the child. Besides, the modern philosophy on the first place puts “life for itself“ and achievement of comfort while the child`s birth always demands from mother of the victims - such is the law of the nature. Similar “switching“ is given to many women far not at once and not easily.

mother is compelled by

After the child`s birth for time to refuse a former social role, to leave work, a habitual circle of friends and entertainments, to accept that way of life which is dictated by the child. It is good if maternal feelings are shown in the woman at once as soon as she saw the small wrinkled face. And if is not present? Then the feeling of loss of “former life“ will be more sharply, and refusal of own interests will demand internal fight.

What can help?

the Postnatal depression exerts

the heavy, destabilizing impact on a family just when peace and harmony in it are especially necessary. Often experiences of the woman suffering from a depression seem unclear, cause not sympathy, but irritation. But at this particular time support and understanding of close people are necessary for both mother, and the kid.

It is good if relatives at least for a while are able to make over themselves effort and not to indulge in senseless reasonings on “She Has to Get It Together“ or “It Seems to Me that It Is Unfair to Me“. The words of a consolation and love told in time can help not less, than tablets - often it is recognized also by doctors. But support should not be limited only to words - the help with economy, with care of the kid is very important too.

psychologists advise

A to the youngest mother to be more attentive and sensitive to the mood and health. And, having felt the first symptoms of a depression, not to be given diseases, and to try “to leave“ this state, to do everything that it was not aggravated. To try to deliver to itself it is as much as possible positive emotions. To have a rest more (a way even at the price of not made household chores). To walk with a carriage not along gas-polluted streets, and in the wood or park - the nature possesses salutary action. To communicate more often with girlfriends, let and by phone - at the heavy moments it is better not to become reserved. Even with a great effort to force itself once a week to leave on skis or to go to the pool - physical exercises are considered as an effective remedy for prevention or treatment of a depression. If there is opportunity, then to agree about a course of massage not only for the child, but also for itself. Useful can be also a visit of a bath or sauna (of course, not right after childbirth).


during a depression are well helped by auto-training and relaxation exercises. However, as many mothers who endured the depressive period remember to master these exercises when you are “in“ a depression, very difficult. Therefore it makes sense to the woman to practise equipment of a relaxation even during pregnancy - on courses or according to books. Ability to relax and reach a condition of rest can be very useful at the time of delivery and after them.


to the Person testing a depression can be helped by comparison of the situation with other people at whom it is much worse than business. “When acquaintances told me about how they carried things in orphanage for blind and visually impaired and that they saw there, I thought of what insignificant my problems against sufferings of these children seem“, - Alyona who for several months tested a postnatal depression remembers.“ I cannot tell that my illness after that at once passed, but the relation to life and to own experiences changed“.

to “Depressive“ mother needs not to hide the state, and to tell about it to relatives and close friends. If they do not offer the help which is so necessary to the woman, it not necessarily means that they are stale or heartless people. Close people can just not understand what happens to you, or not to know what they can make for you. By the way, it is better to agree with relatives about the help in advance, but not when you already “on a limit“.

“When I gave birth to the first child, endured a postnatal depression, however, in not really severe form, - Victoria who expects the second kid tells. - And now I very much do not want that everything repeated - it seems to me that the depression did not allow me to enjoy pleasures of motherhood in the first year of life of the son. Therefore now I made the peculiar “anti-recessionary program“ in advance. I was adjusted on the fact that I will enjoy life, despite fatigue, a sleep debt and a lack of communication. And I will think out some “small pleasures“ to myself. I agreed with the husband in advance that few times in a month he will take out us to the center to sit in cafe or in the wood on a shish kebab, to send “violently“ to a hairdressing salon, to invite girlfriends if sees that I fall into melancholy. Also warned house - psychological support can be necessary for me, it is not a whim.

All these receptions seem such banal when you read about them in the magazine, but - all - to force itself something to do the most important even if there is no wish. The depression is as a funnel, the more deeply plunge into it, the stronger tightens“.

is good if mother thinks more often of the future of the kid, to dream of the one whom he can become, keep the diary of development. It will help to see a situation “in the long term“, not to go in cycles in the present moment. And, above all, even the heaviest minutes it is necessary to think of that, “that God sends the greatest jewelry to those to whom he allows to have children“. And, by and large, all difficulties which for the sake of it should be transferred - including even a postnatal depression - are justified.