Although only a few people talk about it, postpartum anxiety affects about 4%-6% of women. It is possible to suffer from the symptoms of anxiety only but these can also be accompanied by the symptoms of postpartum depression.
What is anxiety after childbirth?
It is more than normal for women to be worried about the baby and about the new responsibilities that they have. Still the women who are affected by this problem experience too many fears and worries regarding themselves and the new baby. There are some conditions that make this one even worse.
If a woman, besides postpartum anxiety, also suffers from panic attacks, agoraphobia and overwhelming anxiety, things may get a lot more complicated. The difference between this problem and the other kinds of anxiety is that it happens and it is triggered by the postpartum period. It is horrible to suffer from panic attacks that strike without warning.
When suffering from anxiety after childbirth, a lot of women notice that they are agitated, nervous, tense and apprehensive because they are afraid that they will have another attack. Still you should know that having panic attacks doesn’t necessarily mean that you have this kind of anxiety.
The causes of the disorder
The truth regarding postpartum anxiety is that the specialists don’t really know why this disorder occurs in case of some of the women. It may be linked to new activities in different parts of the brain. This way the activity of the brain changes and this could trigger the panic attacks.
Other specialists think about anxiety after childbirth that there is a genetic disposition of developing this disorder. It is also believed that anxiety is a behavior that women learn and that becomes something even more consuming when a person is under a lot of stress.
Postpartum anxiety appears for the first time during the first days after childbirth and the symptoms become more and more accentuated during the first year. The women faced with this problem show signs of problems with concentrating and remembering things and troubles with making decisions.
Some other symptoms of anxiety after childbirth include problems with performing the everyday tasks, insomnia, difficulties with relaxing, exhaustion, lack of appetite, feelings of uneasiness that last for long periods of time, suicidal thoughts, and also panic attacks.
Besides these, shortness of breath, chest pain, sweating, trembling, tingling sensations, nausea, shaking, hot flashes and dizziness could also appear during the panic attacks. In order for the specialists to say that you have a panic attack, you must show at least 14 symptoms.
Who is at risk?
Regarding anxiety after childbirth, it is said that the women who have a history of panic attacks and of anxiety are more likely to develop the condition. Also it is likely that they will have it in case they have some family history of anxiety or panic attacks.
Although you may think that postpartum anxiety cannot affect you, it is best to keep an eye out for the signs that have been mentioned.