How Do I Know if I Have Postnatal or Postpartum Depression?

Postnatal or postpartum depression is not uncommon and is different from baby blues, which tend to only last for 2 weeks. Some signs you might be experiencing postpartum depression are:

  • If you feel low or tearful most of the time

  • If you feel irritable or angry towards your family, your baby and yourself

  • You are extremely tired - obviously new motherhood can be tiring but postpartum depression can make it even more extreme

  • You feel like you have lost your enjoyment or interest in doing things, including things that you used to enjoy

  • You have difficulty falling asleep despite feeling tired or you wake up early in the morning even when the baby is asleep

  • You feel like you have lost your appetite, or you are eating more to make yourself feel better

  • You have negative thoughts and feelings of guilt and feel negatively about yourself e.g. that you are a bad mother

  • You find it difficult to understand the needs of your baby

  • You feel less love towards the baby then you hoped

  • Caring for the baby feels joyless or you feel angry and resentful towards the baby

You can also complete the mental health check in the Canopie app, which uses the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression scale. This is a well known way that doctors often use to check if a mother is experiencing symptoms of depression. It will involve answering 10 questions about how you have been feeling over the past few weeks as well as suggestions about what you may want to try - but it is not a diagnosis. We always recommend reaching out to your health provider or a medical professional to ensure you have support to manage your mental health.