Levels of thyroid hormones may also drop after giving birth. The thyroid is a small gland in the neck that helps regulate how your body uses and stores energy from food. Low levels of thyroid hormones can cause symptoms of depression. A simple blood test can tell if this condition is causing your symptoms. If so, your doctor can prescribe thyroid medicine.1
According to the government’s own information, researchers think the big change in hormone levels may lead to depression. The truth is that there is no way for them to be able to prove this. Low levels of thyroid hormone, known as an underactive thyroid can be determined by a simple blood test and receiving proper medication can have the effect of reducing symptoms of depression. The fact that a simple blood test can be performed means that an underactive thyroid is a recognized medical condition with a biological basis. This is not true when it comes to post-partum depression.
There is no objective medical test that can be performed to determine if a woman is suffering from post-partum depression. This same United States government website lists some of the possible symptoms of post-partum depression including: tiredness after delivery, tired from a lack of sleep or broken sleep, feeling overwhelmed with a new baby, doubts about one’s ability to be a good mother, stress from changes in home or work routines, unrealistic need to be a perfect mother, loss of a feeling of who one is after having a baby, feeling less attractive, and a lack of free time.
Given the fact that childbirth has a very dramatic impact on the human body, it is hard to imagine that any woman would not feel tired after delivering a child. The major fluctuations in her hormones can cause a woman to experience either a lack of sleep or broken sleep for a certain period of time. Is there any woman who does not feel overwhelmed, at times, by virtue of the fact that she has a new baby? This child has changed her life forever. This new mother will no longer have the free time which she had prior to getting pregnant or giving birth; this is a normal result of childbearing.
Since children do not arrive with a manual, it is normal for a mother to have doubts about her ability to be a good mother. Even if one is raised in a loving household with caring and attentive parents, no one has any idea what kind of parent they will be until they are in a situation where they become a parent.
Parents instinctively want the best for their child. This child is completely dependent upon his or her parents for every aspect of their daily survival. Wanting to be the best mother for her child is not an indication that a woman is suffering from a mental disorder, but an indication of the fact that she adjusting to her new role as a mother. While it is true that there is no such a thing as a “perfect” parent, the desire to want to do everything extremely well for one’s child is normal.
How can one give birth to a new child and not experience changes in their home or work routine? While it might be easier for women with multiple children to adjust more easily to such changes following the birth of their first child, the first time mother will have to readjust various aspects of her daily life now that she has a child. She may have to cut back on her time at work or postpone other things which she was involved with prior to giving birth until such time as she is able to develop a more stable routine.
A loss of a sense of who one is after having a child seems quite natural as well. This woman, who was once a single, independent human being, has now become someone’s mother. The fluctuation in her hormone levels can easily account for the fact that she is experiencing a sense of loss of identity as well as feeling unattractive. Weight gain during pregnancy, a normal experience, can contribute to a sense of feeling unattractive and this new mother can benefit herself by using her time with a new child both as a bonding experience as well as remaining active in order to help reduce whatever weight she may have gained.
Performing an on-line search of the phrase “post-partum depression”, the first website found was actually a site sponsored by Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, Inc., maker of the drug Pristiq.2 Any woman wanting to find out more information about whether or not she has post-partum depression could click on www.knowmydepression.com and she is immediately sent to the website www.pristiq.com which is nothing more than an advertisement for an anti-depressant medication.
The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN also has link on their website dealing with post-partum depression. When one clicks on the website that person is immediately presented with an enormous advertisement for Pristiq on the right side of the page.3 WebMD has a page available regarding this issue as well. Not surprisingly, this page “emedicinehealth” contains two rather large advertisements for Pristiq.
2) Depression http://www.pristiq.com/major_depressive_disorder.aspx?source=google&HBX_PK=s_+depression&HBX_OU=50&o=47362258|223601699|0&skwid=43000000331928133
3) Post-Partum Depression http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/postpartum-depression/DS00546
4) Pristiq Side Effects http://pointofreturn.com/pristiq_withdrawal.html
5) Jeremiah R. Grosse “The Truth About Mental Illness” http://www.lifeissues.net/writers/gro/gro_121mentalsickness.html
6) Pristiq https://www.pristiq.com/side_effects.aspx?source=google&HBX_PK=s_pristiq+side+effects&HBX_OU=50&o=47362258|223601699|0&skwid=43000000335431243
7) Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale http://www.aap.org/practicingsafety/toolkit_resources/module2/epds.pdf