I do not understand how depression works since I am not the typical type of person who easily gets distracted from my emotional stress. I often find myself positively aware of my surroundings. That’s why I can somehow look closely into my decision-making abilities. As much as I can, I make sure to stay emotionally stable because I know that I can get anxious and stressed when my emotions are not in place.

However, after giving birth last week, things became slightly different as I often find myself lonely, confused, and a bit depressed. I tried working on my mental health by exercising and getting enough sleep, but these habits are not helping me. Ever since I got home from the hospital, I know there is something wrong with me. I was certain that I am experiencing postpartum depression. To understand what I am dealing with, I asked my doctor more about this mental health issue. That is where she explained everything to me. Below are the answered frequently asked questions that my doctor and I discussed.

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How long is the postpartum period? 

The postpartum period commonly refers to the month and a half or six weeks after childbirth. It is a crucial time for both the mother and her newborn baby as both of them are adjusting to the changed involvement in the family. In the postpartum period, the first few hours and days after childbirth, a mother will experience physical and emotional changes.

That explains all the sudden mood changes I experienced within a week. It was all because I have mental and emotional instability. But if you would ask me if I should be worried about this particular situation? The answer is that my therapist and I will be seeing each other for at least a couple of sessions more.

 How long do mood swings after birth last? 

Having a cute newborn baby is something that most women entirely appreciate. It is as if they are blessed with an angel. However, feelings are not the same in general. That is because most new moms will get the baby blues. It is a state where hormonal changes cause a different anxiety level, leading to a lot of crying and restlessness. Though these can go away within the first two weeks after giving birth, some mothers experience lasting emotional and mental effects.

Well, as for me, I don’t think I should wait for a few more weeks before finally realizing that my postpartum depression is already severe. Whether I am dealing with right now is just what people call baby blues, I still want to get rid of this mental health problem as soon as possible.

 When should you be concerned after giving birth? 

It is entirely essential to pay attention to the warning signs of possible complications after giving birth. You have to immediately contact a health care provider as soon as possible if you experience some medical issues. These include heavy bleeding. It is like soaking through more than one pad in an hour or noticing large blood clots that come out of your private area. A red or swollen leg feels warm or painful when you touch it, and an unexplained feeling of restlessness, headaches, and sudden fever.

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 Is postpartum considered a disability?

Under ADA or the Americans with Disability Act, pregnancy is not a disability. However, pregnancy-related impairments caused by postpartum depression can be considered. That is because this type of mental health issue often causes hardship to new moms. It becomes widely accepted as a disability because of the nature of the mental condition’s effects on women’s health. They continue to engage in self-inflicting harm and even suicide.

 Can you get a short-term disability for postpartum? 

Postpartum affects 1-2 out of 1000 women. While people see it as a low rate condition, its effects can be entirely miserable for the affected women. As with other types of mental health issues, women with postpartum depression can apply for short-term disability or long-term disability benefits.

 Can you get PIP for postnatal depression? 

When dealing with mental health problems, such as anxiety or depression, and these affect you in any way you can no longer see yourself functioning the way you are supposed to, you should be eligible for PIP or Personal Independence Payment. As long as you can verify that your mental health causes daily living or mobility issues, then you can apply for the said benefits.

 Does anyone get PIP for mental health? 

People under financial and psychological pressure often end up struggling with circumstances are at risk of increased levels of anxiety, stress, or depression. Unfortunately, Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is not awarded to individuals with a physical or mental health condition. Typically, it gets based on the level of help individuals needs resulting from their condition. Thus, individuals can only guarantee a PIP if they have daily living and mobility needs due to their mental illness.

 How do I pass a PIP assessment for mental health? 

You will be assessed for PIP depending on the level of help you need to complete certain activities. These are categorized into two components, such as daily living and mobility. To pass PIP, you need to obtain a total number of points, and these will decide if you are entitled to PIP or not, including how much money you should be able to receive.

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I know it can be quite overreacting to say that your unexplained sadness and mood changes are entirely related to depression to all the new moms out there. I might be wrong with that information. But would it be nice to know and understand your thoughts and feelings, especially when you are uncertain about them? Remember, not because it does not hurt you for the first few weeks, it does not mean you are exempted from having postpartum depression. It would be nice to pay attention to the warning signs and do not let them slip away. Ensure your overall well-being and prioritize it as much as possible, not only for your sake but for the sake of your family and newborn baby.