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


  • 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  • Feeling withdrawn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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"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. 




PROJECT PROACTIVE is a US 501 (c)(3) public charity, EIN 84-2410920
aiming to break mental health stigmas and proactively alleviate barriers to health through spreading awareness and education.


*DISCLAIMER – The information on this site is provided for informational purposes only. There has been no formal vetting process for information shared on this site and readers should consult a professional for any questions or concerns regarding their health. These resources should not be viewed as a substitute for obtaining professional council.

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