CBT for post-natal depression (PND)
What is post-natal depression?
Post-natal depression (PND) is the term used to describe depression when it occurs following the birth of a baby. Post-natal depression is more likely to occur if you have a previous history of depression or have had recent life stresses. However, it can also start for no obvious reason in women without previous mental health difficulty.
Ante-natal depression (AND) is the term used to describe depression when it occurs during pregnancy. Symptoms experienced are like those in PND, however, with ante-natal depression, you may experience more anxiety about the impending birth and your new role as a mother.
Are you struggling with post-natal depression?
It’s time to get help when you are experiencing the following symptoms:
- Feeling overwhelmed with doubts about your abilities as a mother and with generally coping with everyday tasks
- Difficulties bonding with your baby
- Excessive worry about your baby (around weight gain, health or development)
- Low mood and low self-esteem
- Increased irritability
- Reduced energy/lethargy
- Reduced interest and enjoyment
- Sleep and appetite changes
- Reduced interest in sex
CBT and PND
CBT is the treatment of choice for women just like you who are experiencing depression in the ante-natal and post-natal periods.
Your therapy sessions will help you examine your thoughts around pregnancy and motherhood, looking at the impact of your thoughts on your emotional state and responses to your baby. CBT aims to change the way you think, behave and feel, so you learn to identify the thoughts and feelings that are causing certain behaviours; reducing the symptoms of PND and improving your quality of life.
Depending on the severity of your symptoms, and your treatment plan, you may be offered a combination of CBT therapy and anti-depressant medication.