What’s supposed to be a joyous time is not for some.
"Pregnancy is a very stressful time and a lot of individuals will develop some depression during the pregnancy," says Dr. Robert Aepli, OB/GYN.
A history of depression in yourself or your family and other factors could bring on depression in pregnancy.
"If they’ve gone through some fertility treatments and stuff to get pregnant, there’s been a miscarriage before during pregnancy, if
there’s just kind of undue stress during pregnancy," says Maggi Ault, Six County, Inc. Outpatient Clinician.
Experts say watch for signs of a pregnant woman feeling down, withdrawing or consistently crying.
"It’s more ongoing and maybe a constant, steady thing, or maybe an extreme form of crying. Maybe that’s when outsiders will notice it more than the mom might themselves," says Ault.
It’s important to get the depression treated. A recent study shows that depression can be dangerous for a baby.
"The bond between mother and baby physiologically as well as emotionally is impacted by physical things as well as mental problems and there has been evidence that depression during pregnancy can be associated with low birth weight as well as premature births," says Dr. Aepli.
Depression can be treated with counseling or even medication.
"There are many anti-depressants that are safe to use during pregnancy and in many situations the administration of these medications far out weighs the problem of not giving them," he says.
Many women who are depressed during pregnancy will also experience post-partum depression.