I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy couple of weeks ago and I've been dealing with a really bad postpartum anxiety/depression/hypochondria...you name it! Basically, I start every day being extremely sad, without any reason, start crying when I look at my beautiful baby and my other child and start worrying about all kind of health things that are actually only in my mind, as my doctor always reassures me everything is ok with me or my children. Just to give you an example, my older child has a skin bacterial infection and the doctor assured me it's nothing serious and he will be better soon but I started worrying what if there'd be complications, although these are extremely rare, almost non-existent.
When it comes to me, any pain, discomfort, sore, mole, new symptom etc is a sign of something serious, although I had them all checked by my doctor and was told it's really nothing to worry about. Everything looks just normal and in a way I know this is true! But my mind sometimes says differently!
My biggest enemy: dr. google! I try to stay away from it but sometimes I find myself googling symptoms, which I know can make anxiety even worse.
I'll start seeing a therapist in a week and have been on Zoloft for several day and hope everything will be fine soon.
I am sure there are other moms out there that are going or have gone through the same situation and just wonder how they cope, whether they have any tips, as I do feel very frustrated that instead of enjoying the time with my kids, I keep being sad, worried, irritable!!!
I had a major problem with this and I'm sorry to say that some of the OCD symptoms are still around 2.5 years later...
What I have found to be helpful is yoga breathing (sorry, I don't know the real term, but it's "mental alternate nostril breathing", you can look that up pretty easily I think), which was kind of helpful in a pinch, and lately I've been taking inositol. I don't have a doctor, so I kind of prescribed this to myself, mainly based on internet "research". Ordinarily I would have zero respect for these methods but I was getting pretty worried, and there seems to be no problem taking inositol and breastfeeding, which I'm still doing. Amazingly, the inositol seems to work! I bought the jar of tablets at Whole Foods for $17, which sounds very expensive, and objectively is, but to me it's worth it at the moment, especially considering I have no insurance and can't obtain things like Zoloft.
I think women also use inositol to increase milk supply, and that it is used in conjunction with SSRIs to improve their effectiveness. It is not effective for depression symptoms, just OCD symptoms, which I find more bothersome than depression itself.
so, that is my experience. I could tell you how the PP-OCD manifested itself if you'd like, but basically it's similar to your experience minus the self-hypochondria--all of my hypochondria involved the health of my child.
thanks! good luck!
Hi, I have this exact same ppd/ppa symptoms. Mine started 7 months postpartum. I've been dealing with it for 7 months now. I've tried many alternative routes. I think the biggest challenge is overcoming the ocd part of it, which for me is checking things on the internet constantly which feeds into the worry behavior. I never imagined getting ppd, its rough, but I'm just doing my best day by day and hopefully someday it will get easier.
I taped a piece of paper on my computer monitor (on the border area) that said "no scary websites" and "read something funny". At least it was some kind of reminder! What could you look at these days...The Honest Toddler?
My pediatrician got so sick of me calling her at all hours...in the end, we actually changed doctors! wtf
I'm about 8 months postpartum and just started having these kinds of symptoms about a month ago. Definitely pretty heavy on the hypochondria. I haven't ruled out all of the possible health reasons for the panic attacks I've been having, but everything from the Dr. I went to see came back normal. I didn't really realize until I read this post that this sort of thing is common pp. I've had to jump back into things so quickly after this pregnancy (#2), that I had kind of stopped even thinking about myself as postpartum. It was just a couple days ago that I started thinking my panic attacks could be pp related.
I feel like this is in part related to my overall stress levels in my life, but I had felt like I was dealing with it pretty well. Until all of this started. I think that's why I thought that it was health related at first. I do agree that Dr. Google makes it much worse, which is hard for me because my job involves researching health concerns...
Going to a Dr. has been really helpful because it at least ruled out physical causes and has helped me to realize it's more in my head. although I do feel like there is a strong hormonal component because my anxiety attacks will randomly start no matter where I am or what I'm thinking about. being able to tell myself that it's just fear and there is nothing to really be afraid of has really helped me to start coping with this.
Being around other people is really helpful too, especially if they're other moms.
I'm thinking of trying ashwaganda, which is an adaptogen that kind of helps to regulate the signals from our brains telling us that there is some kind an emergency going on, making it so the adrenals aren't pumping out so many stress hormones all the time. Ashwaganda especially is calming too. I think this might work for me since it seems to be really stress triggered.
I feel like a lot of it for me too is built up emotions from unresolved conflicts with DH and all kinds of feelings that I just haven't processed. So i'm working away slowly at that, but I have to go slow because if I get too worked up talking about it, I start another panic attack.
umm...ok that was kind of rambling, but I hope it helps.