Postpartum or Postnatal depression is a clinical depression that can afflict 5 to 9 % of women who have delivered a baby.
It occurs immediately after child birth or within a few months thereafter and some cases may affect men as well. The chief characteristics of postpartum depression include:
- An inexplicable sadness may be experienced though everything has gone well and mother and child are healthy
- There could be feelings of fatigue even after having recovered from the physical stresses of childbirth.
- There could be insomnia as well as feelings of listlessness and disinterest in things
- Many women experience repeated crying jags that may be triggered by nothing at all or by seemingly innocuous things
- There is the feeling of general anxiety
- Appetite changes are also noted in some episodes of postpartum depression
- Many women experience a reduced libido and a lack of interest in sex
- There are feelings of irritability and anger
Although this is a real condition, it is often got given much credence and less than 20% of women who may have this condition, will seek professional help for it.