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After the Pregnancy

You have spent nine months preparing for your baby’s birth. You have probably read every book, article, and website to make sure you were eating right, exercising at the appropriate level, and taking the necessary vitamins and supplements. Your preparation has paid off… Congratulations!

Now that you have given birth, it is important to keep up the healthy habits you practiced throughout your pregnancy. Your doctor or nurse is the best resource for making sure you are on track. To get ready for your six-week post-delivery visit, download our post-delivery planner and bring it with you to up check-up. Use it to discuss your health and well being with your doctor and nurse.

Please download our full Postpartum information packet for new mothers.

Postpartum Adjustment

Studies show that up to 80% of new mothers experience some type of transitional difficulty during pregnancy or after the baby is born. Information and planning are the keys to a better transition. Most women are faced with unexpected changes such as conflicting emotions, new challenges, and time management concerns. Typically, these issues are not addressed in traditional childbirth education classes, leaving parents feeling uninformed and overwhelmed.

Postpartum Blues

  • Affects 60-80% of new mothers
  • Usually occurs on the 3rd or 4th day and disappears by day 14
  • No special treatments
Common Symptoms:
  • Crying for no apparent reason
  • Loneliness/sadness
  • Irritable
  • Unable to sleep
  • Food craving/Loss of appetite
  • Lack of feelings for the baby
  • Loss of self-confidence
  • Feelings of being overwhelmed

Postpartum Depression (PPD)

  • Affects 10-20% of new mothers
  • Appears from one month to a year
  • Although postpartum blues and PPD may look similar, symptoms seem to worsen after a few weeks rather than subside.
  • Treatment may consist of talking to a healthcare specialist who understands your problem, attending a postpartum depression support group, and/or medication (doctor referral)
Common Symptoms
  • Feeling “Not yourself”
  • Appetite and sleep changes
  • Hopelessness
  • Guilt, inadequacy, worthlessness
  • Over concern/No concern/ Anger towards baby
  • Loss of all interest including sex
  • Fantasies/bizarre thought patterns
  • Nightmares/Hallucinations
  • Feeling out of control
  • Frightening feelings
  • These symptoms may also be mixed with anxiety symptoms (sometimes referred to as postpartum anxiety) which resemble a heart attack such as loss of breath, headache, numbness, and chest palpitations.

Postpartum Psychosis

  • Rarest of all the postpartum illnesses
  • Affects 1 in every 1,000 births
  • Symptoms occur between 3-14 days and initially resemble PPD
  • Severity is the key in diagnosing
Common Symptoms
  • Refusal to eat
  • Loss of memory
  • Excessive energy
  • Total irrationality

If you experience several of the following symptoms for longer than a couple weeks or, if the symptoms are severe enough to interfere with your daily routine, it’s time to seek help.

  • A persistent sad, anxious or “empty” mood
  • Sleeping to much or too little, early morning awakening
  • Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased appetite and weight gain
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed, including sex
  • Restlessness, irritability, or excessive crying
  • Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment, such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic pain
  • Difficulty concentrating remembering, or making decisions
  • Feeling guilty, hopeless, worthless, helpless, or pessimistic
  • Fatigue or loss of energy, feeling “slowed down”
  • Thoughts of death or suicide or suicide attempts

How Counseling Helps

Counseling provides you with an opportunity to sit down with someone who is objective, and capable of offering insights and alternatives for solving life’s problems. More importantly, a therapist is an expert who can Show you ways of ridding yourself of negative thoughts or behavior patterns and adopting constructive new ones. The PPD Center specializes in helping women and their families prepare for and adapt to the stressful and often difficult transition pregnancy & a new baby can bring.

Who Can Help

United Way 24-Hour Help Line: (210) 227-HELP (4357)

The Postpartum Depression Center of San Antonio
921 Proton Rd. San Antonio, TX 78258   |    (210) 497-0800 or (210) 490-4540

The PPD Center of San Antonio is a resource new parents, physicians, & family therapists can rely upon to provide the best care possible.

Benefits they offer:
  • 24 hour on-call service/hospital privileges
  • Most insurance plans accepted, including Medicaid
  • Risk screening tools
  • Individual and/or family therapy
  • PPD support groups
  • Psychiatrist referral for Medication Management
  • Specialists in marriage & family
  • Bi-Lingual therapist available
  • Group psycho-educational seminars
  • Educational materials
  • Community resources network

** Recommended Book: The Girlfriends’ Guide to Surviving the First Year of Motherhood By Vivki Iovine.