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perinatal mental health

Thank you so much to Ilana Dress, LCSW for volunteering to help develop the content for this page.

Please be reminded it is a work in progress. The information on this page is intended to #breakthestigma around perinatal mental health, normalize these conditions, and provide you with awareness resources. It should not replace the need for therapy or medical intervention in any way.

  • Despite these startling statistics, PMADS are under-diagnosed, and under-treated.
     

  • It's is estimated that up to 20% of pregnant women will experience moderate to severe symptoms of depression and/or anxiety*.
     

  • Complications like prematurity, NICU families, birth defects, and pregnancy or infant loss put women at increased risk for PMADS. 

*O’Hara MW and Wisner KL, 2014

** Wisner, KL et al, 2010

DID YOU KNOW...

  • The term ‘perinatal’ refers to before, during, and 1 year after pregnancy.
     

  • Perinatal Mood and anxiety disorders refer to depression, anxiety, OCD, PTDS, Psychosis, and other distressing conditions around the perinatal period.
     

  • Perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADS) are the #1 medical complications related to childbearing.

 

  • Up to 21% of women experience postpartum depression**.

Some Symptoms to look out for


While it's normal to have these feelings sometimes, if you experience any combination of the symptoms below for more than two weeks, you should seek help from a mental health professional:

  • Unexplained Sadness or regular depressed mood

  • Anxiety / constant worry

  • Extreme fatigue

  • Difficulty concentrating

  • Trouble sleeping

  • Feeling withdrawn

  • Thoughts of harming yourself or others

  • Feeling emotionally detached from the baby with little interest in providing essential care.

If you have experienced infant loss or serious complications, it's really helpful to be proactive in accessing support early. It's best not to wait until you experience the above symptoms. 

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RESOURCE

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"You are not alone. You are not to blame. With help, you will be well."

PostPartum Support International (PSI) provides education and resources about Perinatal anxiety and mood disorders, as well as professional trainings and certificate programs. They have a database of resources for women based on location and a helpline you can call to be connected to local resources. They are also on the forefront of postpartum issues in men. 

VIDEOS

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You Are Not Alone: Living With Grief After Pregnancy & Infant Loss with Yonina Kaufman LCSW, Ms Ed
01:24:09

You Are Not Alone: Living With Grief After Pregnancy & Infant Loss with Yonina Kaufman LCSW, Ms Ed

Living with the grief of an infant or a lost pregnancy can be so isolating when its not something normally talked about. Since it's not a common table conversation, people do not realize how many people around them have also suffered with loss. But if according to the world health organization 2.6 million babies are stillborn per year and 1 in 4 women will experience a miscarriage at some point in their life, you can be sure that you are often sitting across the dining room table, socializing with someone who has been there. In this #mentalhealthmonday (originally aired on February 10th, 2020) Yonina Kaufman shares about the effects of this type of grief on parents and families, and what we can do as a community to help break stigmas and alleviate some of the shame and isolation that many people are suffering with in silence. Yonina specializes in helping women and couples who experience(d) perinatal and infant loss, infertility, perinatal or postpartum mood and anxiety disorders. Yonina is trained in maternal mental health, grief and bereavement, trauma, and parent training. While using evidenced based approaches, Yonina is there to help clients untangle their thoughts and feelings, while they go through their grieving, mourning, and/or parenting journey. As the Clinical Coordinator for @atimehug , Yonina is fortunate to support women and couples experiencing perinatal and infant loss. In Yonina’s private practice, she continues to do more of the same. Additionally, Yonina provides clinical supervision for therapists and social work interns, as well as conduct parenting classes for parents with children of all ages and stages. Project Proactive is a grassroots volunteer initiative to educate the community, raise awareness, normalize the conversation, and break stigmas surrounding all things mental health. In order to further these goals, @project_proactive hosts weekly live interviews on Instagram with various mental health professionals, organizations, and people who have important stories to tell. Follow us on Instagram to find out about upcoming topics or to get more involved. You can also find more resources on our website, www.jproactive.com