Baby blues vs Post-partum depression: What's the difference?

Feeling unusually gloomy even with your bundle of joy in your arms? Find out if you're suffering from the baby blues or the dreaded postpartum depression.

postpartum depression

Finally cradling the baby in your arms is supposed to give you joy you never thought imaginable. The only problem is, you feel none of the so-called mother’s bliss. In fact, all you are is a big ball of sadness and anxiousness post-birth. Sounds like a case of baby blues... or could this be the onset of postpartum depression?

Luckily, baby blues could go away in a few weeks’ time. Postpartum depression, on the other hand, could last as short as a few weeks, but in some cases, go on for months or even years. The reason why people easily mistake baby blues to postpartum depression is because of the similarities in symptoms. But postpartum depression takes on a more serious condition, brought on by hormonal or physical changes, and the stress coupled with having a new baby.

Here are symptoms that you should watch out for:

Severe mood swings and intense irritability or anger

Baby blues may simply make you feel irritable to a certain degree, but nothing a little comfort may cure – affection from the husband, a little ‘me’ time, or a simple indulgence like chocolate.

Postpartum depression makes you feel more out of control with your anger that mood swings become extreme, sometimes triggering thoughts of harming yourself or worse, your baby.

postpartum depression

Loss of interest

In postpartum depression, you feel like you’ve lost all interest in things that used to get you up and going. You go about your day with a feeling like all joy and spirit have been sucked out of you. You lack the appetite for life, you don’t want to see friends and family, you don’t even feel the least bit interested to make love to your partner.

Watch out for this postpartum depression symptom, as this may result in a dent on your marriage and relationships.

Severe drop in self-esteem

After giving birth, you start feeling like a worthless nobody. This is clearly a sign of postpartum depression as thoughts of inadequacy as an individual start to get to your head, making you lose esteem and drive like none of what you do is worth it.

If you feel like your self-esteem is taking a beating post-birth, surround yourself with people who love and care for you to validate your self-worth.

postpartum depression

You can’t – and don’t feel like – bonding with your baby

Postpartum depression makes you nothing short of indifferent towards your little one. When the sight of your own baby just makes you want to run the other way instead of overwhelming you with that motherly glow, this is a red flag for postpartum depression. Studies have shown how postpartum depression could have long-term behavioral and emotional repercussions on the baby.

When any of these symptoms come to play, or if you just feel unusually out of it even with your new title as ‘Mom,’ then immediately seek the advice of your health practitioner for possible medication, and create a solid support system to help you through this tough time, whether it’s the baby blues or diagnosed postpartum depression.

This is when a baby needs all the love and care that they can easily get from you as a mom so making sure you are physically and emotionally healthy will give you the best reward you can ever ask for – invaluable time with your baby.

This article was first published on theAsianparent Philippines