Pregnancy is a new phase in a woman’s life. It is often exciting and engaging, with many challenges along the way. But it can also be overwhelming for many reasons. After giving birth, everything changes, and some things may not be as expected.
Postpartum depression can be a result of these changes. It can also have a chemical reason inside your organism. They probably told you about postpartum hemorrhage as a complication of giving birth. But did you know you can feel down during this exciting time?
So what is postpartum depression and can TMS treatment help?
The American Psychological Association defines anxiety as an emotion characterized by tension and worries along with physical changes triggered in response to them. Thus, anxiety features intrusive thoughts but also rapid heartbeat, and high blood pressure.
Negative emotions are a part of the human experience. Thus, it is essential to know what is anxiety disorder and how it differs from regular nervousness. To make it simple, let us break down the difference by answering three questions:
In most cases, postpartum depression symptoms appear a few days after giving birth. The onset can be extended to a few months after delivery. After depressive symptoms start, they last for weeks or months. In some cases, they will only resolve when the patient receives treatment. In others, symptoms improve but do not resolve completely, and patients get used to negative emotions, fatigue, and other symptoms.
The most important warning signs and symptoms of postpartum depression include:
Postpartum depression symptoms are difficult to treat for many reasons. Women are usually afraid of antidepressants if they are breastfeeding. Mothers typically have a stigma and become hesitant about receiving psychotherapy. Studies show that psychotherapy is not enough treatment for severe cases. And electroconvulsive therapy has many side effects.
TMS is an FDA-approved therapy for depression. As such, there is background evidence to use this method for postpartum depression, too. Moreover, TMS therapy is noninvasive and harmless for the mother and child. The experience is so far positive, and combination treatment with transcranial magnetic stimulation is expected to yield outstanding results.
A recent systematic review evaluated the results of seven clinical trials. These studies included a total of 60 women. 6 out of 7 studies showed a significant reduction of postpartum depression symptoms. Up to 88% of patients had a complete remission of depressive symptoms in one of the studies, and the rest had similar results.
It was tested with and without concomitant treatment, and TMS showed efficacy in both cases. More studies are required to assess the effectiveness of TMS treatment for postpartum depression. However, there is significant evidence and an excellent tolerability rate to use it safely in lactating women.
Postpartum depression is a relatively common problem in women after giving birth. It is more severe than the baby blues and lasts for a more extended period. Postpartum depression symptoms include the usual depression symptoms.
Besides sadness and feelings of guilt, the new mother may also develop a fear of being left alone with her baby and disinterest in her child’s wellbeing. TMS treatment stands as a suitable alternative option for these mothers.
They are probably hesitant to receive psychotherapy or consume antidepressants if they are breastfeeding. TMS therapy is approved by the FDA as a treatment for depression and has no side effects for the mother and her child. As such, it is an attractive option to consider with your doctor. If they feel you are a candidate for TMS therapy, you can adopt this method as a treatment option to recover faster from this episode.