The birth of a child is a joyous event for new mothers. This brand new life brings a huge variety of changes, from sleepless nights and adjustments in your daily schedule to unbelievable happiness at every milestone your baby reaches, like their first smile or coo. How could something so wonderful be tainted by any sadness? Unfortunately, for many women, postpartum depression (PPD) can overshadow the birth of a child with a deep sense of sadness, exhaustion and extreme anxiety.
PPD is a mood disorder that occurs after childbirth. It can take on many forms and affects a huge percentage of new mothers. The exact number of women with postpartum depression is hard to pin down. After all, what new mother wants to admit that she is struggling with depression when the birth of a child is supposed to bring nothing but joy? This means many women are struggling with PPD who remain undiagnosed.
If you are struggling with postpartum depression after giving birth, you are not alone. PPD is a pervasive disorder worldwide. To understand the magnitude of this mental health issue, here are some statistics that reveal just how common postpartum depression is.
Postpartum Depression Rates
Because of the shame many new mothers feel when they experience PPD symptoms, the exact number of those with the disorder is unknown. However, most experts agree that the following statistics give us a rough idea on the rate at which postpartum depression occurs:
- Between 70 to 80 percent of women in the United States admit that they have the "baby blues."
- One in seven women will likely experience depressive symptoms after giving birth. That's 600,000 women in the U.S. alone.
- PPD can also affect women who have miscarried or who have experienced a stillbirth.
- Globally it's believed that postpartum depression impacts tens of millions of new mothers.
- Because PPD often goes unreported, these numbers may actually be twice as prevalent as what's believed.
PPD Risk Factor Statistics
It doesn't matter your race, ethnicity, educational status or socioeconomic level, postpartum depression can impact anyone. PPD has even been experienced by adoptive parents and new fathers, especially if the mother has postpartum depression. Although no one knows what causes PPD, there are risk factors associated with the development of the disorder:
- Mothers with a history of depression, anxiety or another mood disorder are 30 to 35 percent more likely to develop PPD.
- Those who've struggled with PPD in the past are 10 to 50 percent more likely to experience it with subsequent births.
- Those from lower socioeconomic statuses are 11 times more likely to develop PPD.
Know When to Ask for Help
Postpartum depression is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. If anything, the statistics above should show you how common this disorder really is. PPD usually develops within the first year after the birth of your child. If you find that you're sad, hopeless, moody or anxious after giving birth, the compassionate staff at Brookhaven Retreat can help. We are a women's only residential treatment center specializing in the treatment of a variety of mental health issues. Contact us today to find out more about our treatment programs and how we can help you recover.