Most people who are about to give birth or who have recently given birth experience a range of emotions, including what is commonly known as the “baby blues.” Many new parents suffer from mood swings or anxiety, or they report feeling overwhelmed. However, postpartum or perinatal depression is a different and more serious condition that needs to be addressed. If you think you are suffering from more than just the baby blues—or if you are at high risk for depression—it’s important that you seek postpartum depression treatment as soon as possible.

Postpartum and Perinatal Depression
Unlike typical post-pregnancy symptoms, postpartum depression symptoms are more intense and last longer. Symptoms of postpartum depression—which may include depressed mood, severe mood swings, difficulty bonding with your baby, insomnia, or overwhelming fatigue—typically start within the first few weeks of pregnancy. They may, however, begin during pregnancy, or, alternatively, up to a year after birth. The term perinatal depression refers to people who experience depression at any time either during or after pregnancy, as opposed to postpartum depression which refers only to the period after giving birth.

Postpartum Depression Treatment
Once you speak with a mental health professional and determine that you are experiencing postpartum depression, there are several options for treatment. The most common of these are psychotherapy and antidepressants, the same treatments that are used in other forms of depression. With proper treatment, symptoms of postpartum depression typically improve.

Another helpful option for postpartum depression treatment—particularly for those who have proven resistant to other treatments—is ketamine therapy. A recent study showed that ketamine, when administered intravenously at the time of delivery, can reduce the risk of postpartum depression in women at high risk for postpartum depression.

If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed after giving birth or if you are at high risk for postpartum depression, ketamine therapy may be a great option to help you feel like yourself again.

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