pmad

PMADs are the new Postpartum Depression

Most people are familiar with “postpartum depression,” a term that has been used for decades to describe the mental health issues that women experience after giving birth. This term has been replaced in recent years as the medical community and society have learned more about maternal mental health and the myriad of symptoms that go beyond depression in the perinatal community.

PPD has been replaced with Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders or PMAD as a more appropriate description. In addition to depression, mothers also struggle with postpartum anxiety, OCD and psychosis.

Do You Have PMADs

If you’re new mom and you are not experiencing the expected feelings of joy and excitement, it can be upsetting and confusing.  We want you to know that you’re not alone: Anywhere from 40 to 80 percent of new mothers experience the baby blues – an emotional state of tearfulness, unhappiness, worry, self-doubt, and fatigue. The baby blues typically begin a few days after delivery and go away on their own within a week or two. However, if your feelings seem unusually intense and have not decreased after a couple of weeks, you are probably wondering whether you will ever feel better again.  You may be feeling very scared, confused, disappointed, sad or angry.  We understand, we’ve been there and it may come as a surprise, but you could be experiencing PMADs.

If you are wondering whether what you are experiencing is normal new mom stress or something more severe, that needs treatment, we can help.

Anxiety and/or depression during pregnancy and the first year after giving birth affect up to 1 in 5 new or expectant mothers and their families.  These illnesses – also known as perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, or PMADs — are the #1 complication of pregnancy and childbirth.

Women of every culture, age, income level, and race can develop PMADs.  Symptoms can appear anytime during the two-year span from conception through baby’s first birthday.  Onset of symptoms may be gradual or sudden.  Perinatal mood and anxiety disorders are caused by changes in biology, physiology, environment, and expectations.