How to Spot Postpartum Depression in Loved Ones

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Adjusting to life with a newborn is stressful in the best of times, but adapting to such change during a global pandemic adds another layer of worry when it comes to moms balancing their mental loads. That can make it even more challenging for people whose partners have recently given birth to decipher the new mother’s mental state: Is the weeping and moments of sadness simply due to baby blues or could it mark something more acute like postpartum depression?

Changes in a new mom’s mood can range from the imperceptible (becoming quiet more often) to the drastic (expressing that she feels like a failure as a mother and wife)—but both ends of this spectrum could indicate a disorder that calls for some type of treatment. So how do you know if a loved one is among the 10 to 15 percent of mothers in the US each year suffering from postpartum depression? It can be hard to detect, but…

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