Merck Manual

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Preventing Depression After Delivery

Preventing Depression After Delivery

Women can take steps to combat feelings of sadness after having a baby:

  • Getting as much rest as possible—for example, by napping when the baby naps

  • Not trying to do everything—for example, by not trying to keep a spotless house and make home-cooked meals all the time

  • Asking for help from family members and friends

  • Talking to someone (husband or partner, family members, or friends) about their feelings.

  • Showering and dressing each day

  • Getting out of the house frequently—for example, to run an errand, meet with friends, or take a walk

  • Spending time alone with their husband or partner

  • Talking with other mothers about common experiences and feelings

  • Joining a support group for women with depression

  • Recognizing that fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and doubts about being a mother are normal in new mothers and that these effects usually pass