Postpartum Anxiety Options

By Pamela Price
Mothering Magazine
August 2006 Online Bulletin

Healthcare practitioners are becoming increasingly savvy to the fact that moms may encounter more than just the “baby blues” in the weeks and months after birth. Postpartum anxiety, characterized by classic symptoms such as hot or cold flashes, dizziness, tremors and feelings of helplessness, is an often frightening condition that may exist alongside or independent from the more commonly diagnosed postpartum depression.

Treatment options vary, but many women find relief by combining proper nutrition (especially B vitamins), an exercise regimen, and cognitive behavior therapy. Others may seek seemingly more aggressive treatment through prescription medication, which may or may not be compatible with breastfeeding. Be aware, too, that it can take up to eight weeks to see effects from medication alone. In addition, the drugs are typically more effective when used in tandem with the above treatments.

What’s a new mom who finds herself on shaky emotional ground to do? Don’t go it alone; ask for help. Find a provider who will thoroughly assess your situation. Enlist their help in working with you to create an appropriate, effective plan of action that values your commitment to natural living. For more information and for resources, visit Postpartum Support International’s web site at or call their helpline at (800) 944-4PPD.

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