Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Baby Blues Can Affect Pregnant Women, Not Just After Giving Birth

Most of us have heard of postpartum depression, sometimes called the baby blues, affecting women who have just given birth, but pregnant women can get the blues too.
The problem is few doctors screen for it, and many pregnant women are afraid to admit to it. In fact, one social worker says at least ten percent of expecting mothers suffer from depression, but the numbers could be much higher.
Clinical Social Worker Susan Stone said, "The motherhood myth still associates a stigma to that. That this is the time you should be happy. So you can imagine how much that would further isolate a person, and make her less likely to reach out for help."
The risks of untreated depression during pregnancy can be serious: pre-term labor, increased chance of cesarean section, low birth weight, and a higher likelihood the mother will also suffer from post-partum depression.

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