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Pregnancy and Depression- How Counseling Can Help
Counseling for Depression During Pregnancy
During your pregnancy, you have probably heard a lot of talk about the joy of pregnancy. Your baby will be a “bundle of joy”! Birth will be the “happiest day of your life”.
But what happens when you struggle to find joy as you prepare to welcome your bundle of joy?
Today, you will learn about perinatal depression, or depression during pregnancy. Then, you will learn what you can do to feel like yourself again and prepare for your baby’s arrival. Finally, you will learn why therapy can help. (Related article: Should I Seek Counseling for Depression?)
Pregnancy and Depression
Pregnancy depression may catch you off guard. After all, you are probably surrounded by excitement and anticipation for the arrival of your new baby. So why is it so hard to feel excited?
If you can relate, you may be experiencing perinatal depression. (Related article: Surprising Symptoms of Depression That You May Miss). Here are some more symptoms you may experience as a result of depression during your pregnancy:
-Feelings of emptiness
-Feelings of guilt or helplessness
-Loss of interest in things you normally enjoy
-Exhaustion or fatigue
-Unexplained pain or stomach problems you can’t seem to resolve on your own
-Trouble getting excited about your baby
-Doubting your parenting abilities
-Thoughts about hurting yourself or your baby
If that list felt very familiar, you may worry that you did something to cause your perinatal depression. First, know that perinatal depression is not your fault. And depression during your pregnancy does not mean you will have a bad pregnancy, birth, or postpartum experience. (Related article: Let’s Talk About Postpartum Depression)
It’s also important to remember that you do not have to suffer. Let’s talk about some things that can help you cope with depression symptoms during your pregnancy.
One of the best things you can do to help manage perinatal depression is to take time to care for yourself. Give yourself time to rest adequately, eat healthy foods, and participate in things you enjoy. Care for your body, and don’t be afraid to contact your doctor about potential antidepressant options that are safe and effective during pregnancy. (Related Article: National Institute of Mental Health- Perinatal Depression).
Reach Out to Others
One thing that may be especially challenging for you during this time is reaching out for help. But, don’t be afraid to find support in the people around you. Reach out to friends, family, and loved ones and seek support where you are able. Additionally, local support groups can help you find additional support from others who may also be struggling with depression during their pregnancies. (Related article: The Difference Between Sadness and Depression)
Therapy Can Help
Another great resource during this challenging time in your life is therapy. Individual counseling can help you learn coping skills for depression symptoms that can serve you throughout your life, not just during your pregnancy and postpartum. A therapist will give you a safe place to share your experiences and find ways to thrive as a new parent.
We are here to help. Start counseling for postpartum depression in Orem, South Jordan, or Spanish Fork.
Written by Lauren Adkins