Baby Blues and Postpartum Depression

Did you know that nearly 80% of new mothers experience temporary symptoms of depression around the third day after giving birth? More rarely, these symptoms persist and develop into depression. Learning more about the baby blues and postpartum depression can help you better cope.


Pregnancy and childbirth are unique experiences but they generate many upheavals. In the first few days after giving birth, the mother must adapt to the arrival of the baby and many other elements. Around the third day (sometimes before and up to 10 to 14 days after), many women experience the onset of symptoms suggesting emotional imbalance such as:

  • mood swings, such as alternating between laughter and tears;
  • irritability;
  • impatience;
  • insomnia;
  • a feeling of maternal vulnerability or incompetence.

These manifestations of hyper-emotionality are completely normal and there is no need to worry. They are caused by hormonal changes and fatigue following childbirth. The intensity and duration of the symptoms vary from one mother to another; for example, they can last only one day, or even a few days. The symptoms generally disappear in less than two weeks.


Tips for mom:

  • Talk about your emotions to your partner, family, friend or medical staff.
  • Ask for help with your care or the baby’s care. Get help in any way you can.
  • Sleep whenever you get the chance.
  • Limit the number of visitors if it exhausts you or adds additional stress.
  • Enjoy skin-to-skin contact with your baby.
  • Be kind and tolerant towards yourself. Don’t aim for perfection.
  • Surround yourself with one or more people with whom you feel confident and with whom you can be yourself. For example, ask your best friend to be by your side during these more difficult times.

Advice for the spouse, family or entourage:

  • If you no longer recognize the mother temporarily, don’t worry. The symptoms of baby blues are generally temporary. Take them with a grain of salt.
  • Be gentle, patient and comforting.
  • Praise the mother; use positive reinforcement.
  • Don’t tell him what to do and let him experiment on his own.
  • Make her laugh. Humor will help put things into perspective.
  • Offer him your help and support.


Unlike the baby blues, which are often mild and temporary, postpartum depression is a more serious medical condition and often lasts longer. It can harm both the mother and the baby; this is why it must be taken seriously. Between 10 and 20% of women will experience more severe symptoms in the year after giving birth. Unfortunately, postpartum depression can last several months and sometimes more than a year. Women who have it may be hesitant to seek help because they feel shame, a sense of failure or guilt. Furthermore, some of them wrongly believe that the symptoms they experience are normal and can be explained by fatigue caused by the arrival of the newborn.

If you are suffering from postpartum depression, it is important that you get a diagnosis and begin treatment without delay. Here are some examples of symptoms that may suggest such a condition:

  • a feeling of constant exhaustion or discouragement;
  • extreme anxiety;
  • difficulty sleeping;
  • constant crying;
  • a feeling of worthlessness or excessive guilt;
  • significant changes in your appetite;
  • a lack of interest in usual activities;
  • an inability to care for the baby or oneself;
  • physical symptoms: headaches, numbness, chest pain, hyperventilation, etc.
  • irritability or aggression;
  • dark or suicidal thoughts.

These symptoms usually occur at least one month after delivery and during the first year. If you notice one or more of these symptoms, do not delay in consulting a doctor for your own good and that of your child.


There are several ways to combat postpartum depression. Psychological help, support networks and the use of medication (e.g. antidepressants) are all measures that can be put forward to help women struggling with this illness. Close medical monitoring is helpful and almost always necessary.

If your doctor prescribes medication, talk to your pharmacist. They can listen to you and provide information about all aspects of the medication, including the benefits, how long it takes to work, side effects, and how to manage them.

Beyond medical care, taking care of yourself and adopting a healthy lifestyle will help you get through this more difficult period. Here are some tips in this regard:

  • Take the time to eat well.
  • Don’t neglect your personal care: taking a bath or shower, getting dressed, putting on makeup or doing your hair help maintain morale and self-esteem.
  • Go out to relax and take your mind off things, with or without the baby.
  • Learn to delegate: baby care, household chores, daily management, etc.
  • Exercise regularly; choose activities that you really enjoy.
  • Accept that not everything is perfect.
  • Get a massage or learn relaxation techniques.

If you are suffering from postpartum depression, please don’t judge yourself. It is a disease like many others. On the contrary, trust yourself that you will be able to find the resources to help you get through it, and ask for help from those around you in this regard. Becoming a parent is an experience that is meant to be enriching and fulfilling, but which can be more difficult for some. Recognizing the symptoms of postpartum depression allows you to detect it early and take steps to remedy the situation. This way, you can finally enjoy the many joys that motherhood has in store for you!


Abbas Jahangir

I am a researcher and writer with a background in food and nutritional science. I am the founder of, our reputable online platform offering scientifically-backed articles on health, food, nutrition, kitchen tips, recipes, diet, and fitness. With a commitment to providing accurate and reliable information, we strive to empower our readers to make informed decisions about their health and lifestyle choices. Join us on's journey toward a healthier and happier lifestyle.

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