Postpartum Depression in Women (and Men)

Scientists estimate that 1 out of 10 women suffer with postpartum depression, a condition that affects sexuality. Researchers have found that women are not the only family members who have this emotional difficulty. Men can also experience postpartum depression, at roughly the same rate as women. Because having a new baby is a huge life change, you should be prepared for this possibility.

What causes postpartum depression in women?

Levels of the sex hormones progesterone and estrogen drop abruptly after childbirth, and this sharp decrease can trigger postpartum depression. The thyroid hormones can also decline, resulting in fatigue and depression. Many women have alterations in the body’s metabolism, causing a depressed mental state. The causes are not just physical, either. Emotional reasons include a decreased sense of body image, anxiety, and inability to cope with the responsibilities of motherhood.

What causes postpartum depression in men?

According to researchers, sudden and unexpected lifestyle changes trigger a father’s postpartum depression. Once the baby arrives, there is an immediate change in the family structure. Many men feel as if they are not getting enough attention from their female partners.

What are the symptoms of postpartum depression in women?

Not all women have the exact same set of symptoms with postpartum depression. Some have all symptoms, while others suffer with just a few. These include a sad mood, inability to sleep, loss of appetite, decreased energy, no motivation, lack of interest, feeling irritable, restlessness, inability to concentrate, crying, and thoughts of suicide.

What are the symptoms of postpartum depression in men?

For men, the depression following the birth of a child can lead to increased use of drugs or alcohol, engagement in conflicts, and more displays of anger. Most other signs are similar to those for women and include a sad mood, weight loss or gain, oversleeping or trouble sleeping, impaired concentration, loss of interest, fatigue, and thoughts of death.

What can women do to prevent and help with postpartum depression?

Women have many options when it comes to coping with postpartum depression. These include:

  • Seek out medical help when needed.
  • Seek support without hesitation.
  • Go on frequent short outings.
  • Get plenty of sleep after the delivery.
  • Spend time with your significant other.
  • Be realistic with your expectations.

What can men do to prevent and help with postpartum depression?

There are a few things you can do to get a handle on postpartum depression. These include:

  • Create a financial plan for baby-related expenses.
  • Attend parenting classes.
  • Address relationship issues before the arrival of the child.
  • Share childcare responsibilities.
  • Join a support group for new fathers.

Sexuality and Your Brain

Libido comes from inside the brain. The brain is the organ that gives us our most intense sexual desire and pleasure. A woman’s libido can be greatly affected after childbirth. Anxiety and stress alter sexuality and your brain. Good mental health is a requirement for sexual desire in both women and men. Men should keep in mind that this loss of libido is only temporary. Not many women feel sexy during this life transformation, but sexual desire returns once everyone adjusts to the changes.

 

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