There is a lot of talk about “baby blues” and even post partum depression due to an upheaval in hormone levels after a woman gives birth. Not to mention, the shock of motherhood is a huge contributing factor. However, many times depression does not end when the baby starts to grow up. Many mothers suffer from depression for a variety of reasons.
When you think about it, when a mother is raising young children, or children with special needs- she doesn’t really have much time to herself. Everything is about the children, and very little is about her. When a mother puts her needs on the back burner which always ends up happening, she will become very depressed because very few of her needs are being met. Not to mention, raising children can be financially straining and that can be depressing as well. Not to mention, if the mother was prone to depression before having children, then that in itself creates more of a chance for full blown depression to manifest.
Signs of depression are sudden changes in mood, appetite, weight and losing interest in activities that were previously enjoyed. There is also a loss of energy, fatigue and that feeling of a dark cloud around. Depression can easily get worse and if it is, then it is definitely time to see a doctor and get some counselling.
Here is one tip that is a must do for any mom (or caregiver) to use in order to help reduce depression. It may be very difficult to do for mothers who are raising young children or children with special needs but it is absolutely essential for them to find time to only look after themselves. Even if it is for 10 minutes here or there. Just go and have a tea or coffee and do not allow anyone to interrupt you. Go read an interesting website or magazine. Just that little bit of time alone on a daily basis can really be helpful.
There are also some helpful online networks for people dealing with depression to take advantage of.
Moms should also join CafeMom and there are some good groups on depression as well there.
Moms, if you are suffering from depression, do not suffer in silence. There are many others who understand and can help. Take advantage of the resources available and there is a light at the end of the tunnel.