While the arrival of a new baby is regarded as a happy event, for some parents this may lead to an awfully dark episode of melancholy and anxiousness. Coping with postnatal depression can prove to be remarkably lonely and hard, as social expectations for new parents to be thrilled can weigh heavily.
Yet, as many as 15 per cent of new parents struggle with postnatal depression. The true figure could be much higher as new mothers and fathers suffering from this disorder often don’t ask for help.
What are the signs of postnatal depression?
Postnatal depression has similarities with other types of depression. Having said that, being a mother or father creates specific problems and complications which can make it difficult to tell whether you have depression, are just worn out or still adjusting to life with your new baby.
Typical symptoms include:
- becoming unhappy, low or tearful
- experiencing reduced energy or fatigue
- becoming easily irritated and quick to anger
- lack of sleep
- appetite alterations – This could be a boost in desire for food, producing possible over eating, or appetite loss, leading to weight loss
- loss of enjoyment
- loss in interest in sex
- negative feelings
- evading social events, even with family or friends
- feeling hopeless
- suicidal emotions
In rare cases, a few people might experience excessive symptoms such as believing odd things or hearing voices.
How can hypnosis assist recovery?
Hypnotherapy has proven to be a helpful method for addressing postnatal depression for many people. Whilst prescription medication may help for a while, the improvements they bring may very well be limited. In some cases it is because stressful events which could have triggered or brought about the postnatal depression remain unresolved, or because the postnatal depression is actually an extension of pre-existing depressive or anxiety disorders. This means medication may only achieve benefits on the surface. Some individuals find psychotherapy or coaching to be the most beneficial strategy for achieving long-term healing.
As hypnosis works with the subconscious mind, the professional hypnotherapist will have a much better chance of finding the root source of your depression. A few new mums feel guilty about going through postnatal depression. They can’t understand why they feel so low as they simply adore their newborn and can’t imagine why they should be depressed. For women who feel incapable of spending time with their infant this may be especially hard, yet the explanation is complex and has little to do with the child.
In fact, many underlying reasons can trigger postnatal depression, and each person’s experience is unique. By working with a hypnotherapist, it is possible to start to ‘re-programme’ the mind, in a way specific to your needs, to be free from the melancholy and to help you to begin to enjoy being a parent.
Tunbridge Wells hypnotherapist Karen Martin pointed out: “New parents are under so much pressure to be perfect parents while grappling with adjusting to a major life event which creates change in pretty much every area of their lives. Mothers and fathers experience different stresses as they take on enormous new responsibilities. Once their concerns have been resolved it is possible for them to confidently enjoy parenthood and appreciate its rewards.”