Help for Postpartum Depression and Postpartum Anxiety at Long Island Counseling Services
Having a child is already overwhelming. But it is especially difficult when you’re also experiencing rapid hormonal changes, limited sleep, and an adjustment that few people are ready to experience no matter how excited they are about bringing a child into the world.
We do not entirely know what causes postpartum depression – depression and anxiety that a woman* experiences after giving birth – but we know that it is common, it is distressing, and it makes it harder to care for both yourself and your child.
At Long Island Counseling Services, we are here to provide help for postpartum depression and new parents. We have two offices – one in Melville, NY and one in East Meadow, and we are also available for remote therapy for anyone in New York State. Please contact us using our online form, or reach out to your preferred office and let’s connect you to a therapist that is here to help.
How to Make Sense of Postpartum Depression
Postpartum depression does not have a single and specific cause. It is often a combination of many different factors that can all affect women in different ways. Rapid hormonal shifts are the most common reason that women experience postpartum depression, but it is not often the only factor. Other factors include:
- Lack of sleep
- Past trauma
- Demanding labor
- Life disruption
- Disagreements with partner
- Physical discomforts from childbirth
- Unrealistic expectations
Most women that experience postpartum depression (PPD) do not seek help. Despite as many as 50% to 70% of women experiencing at least some form of the “baby blues,” it is a something that many women suffer with in silence. Part of that is because, even though it is so common, many women do not know about it or recognize how common it is. In addition, even those that know about postpartum depression choose to avoid help. There are many reasons for this:
- Shame/Guilt – Many women feel shame or guilt that they are not as happy as they expected to be or wanted to be after having a child. They may not seek help because they feel upset with themselves that they feel this way, and do not want to talk about it with others.
- Natural Emotions – All forms of depression, including postpartum depression, feel natural and normal when a person experiences it. Most people do not have an “aha” moment where they say “oh, this is postpartum depression!” Depression feels so normal and natural when it’s occurring, it doesn’t always make it easy for someone to realize they’re struggling.
- Spontaneous Recovery – Some people also, upon realizing they have post-partum depression, decide that they’re just going to wait it out. For some women with postpartum depression, the depression will eventually go away. Unlike other forms of depression, spontaneous recovery does happen, and so they would rather not distract themselves with therapy and other treatments.
But PPD – even mild versions – is something that deserves to be treated. That is because PPD, even if it will recover on its own, is often traumatizing. Many women feel sadness, shame, and other issues about their PPD even after the postpartum depression has gone away. The memories of living with it cause additional distress, and they may also feel sadness over how much it took away from the joys they wanted to experience with their newborn child.
In addition, PPD is often upsetting enough that some women will avoid having more children because they do not want to experience PPD again. And, while it can spontaneously recovery, it doesn’t always. Some women have PPD for months and years, and sometimes the effects of postpartum depression touch their lives forever unless they receive help.
What Are the Symptoms of Post-Partum Depression?
PPD causes most of the same symptoms as other forms of depression. Some of the symptoms of post-partum depression include:
- Struggling to Connect with Baby
- Mood Swings
- Loss of Appetite
These symptoms may be ongoing, all throughout the day, or occur when specifically doing something with the baby, like breastfeeding. They can be mild or severe. Very severe PPD can lead to issues such as post-partum psychosis, which requires immediate help. Some women also experience other forms of post-partum mental health issues, like post-partum obsessive compulsive disorder and post-partum anxiety.
How is Postpartum Depression Treated?
Because PPD can be caused by a combination of factors, the solutions that we use here at Long Island Counseling Services have to also account for these different factors and may change depending on our conversations. For example, a woman that experienced trauma may benefit from a therapy that focuses on their past experiences, while a woman with PPD largely based on current experiences may be something that requires an approach more structured.
Some of the treatments that we use include:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Couples Therapy
- Psychodynamic Theory
- Psychoanalytic Theory
- Behavioral Modification
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
We may also consider a combination of these depending on your experience, as a way to make sure that we’re addressing all of your concerns and struggles. Many women with PPD also have struggled with conditions in the past or had undiagnosed issues, and so we may want to treat those as well.
Why Choose Long Island Counseling Services?
Long Island Counseling Services provides therapy for patients with post-partum depression. We have a team of therapists that all offer different perspectives and approaches, which allows us to match you with a therapist that fits your experience and your personality. Everyone in both our East Meadow and Melville offices recognizes how important your recovery is, and why it is so important to give you the property care and guidance that you deserve.
Let’s find you some help for postpartum depression. Call us today to get started, or use our online form to get connected to the office of your choosing.