Does NOT only occur during the postpartum period! AND It doesn't ONLY affect new mothers.
Postpartum depression (PPD) is the most common complication of childbirth. An estimated 1 in 7 women will experience PPD with an increased risk in minority women (as many as 3-4 out of 10 women of color will experience postpartum depression). and 1 out of 10 dad will experience postpartum depression.
Rates of depression are as high during pregnancy as during the postpartum period-this is why we often refer to it as perinatal depression.
Postpartum depression can be extremely prolonged (years) if not adequately treated.
A thorough assessment with a trained perinatal mental health specialist is essential. Depression that occurs during pregnancy or the postpartum period may present differently than other depressions-it is often more anxious and irritable. The postpartum period is often a time when bipolar disorder will first occur.
Untreated maternal depression can have a negative impact on the baby as well as the mother.