I thought long and hard about what my first post should be, I wanted it to be something personal yet something people can relate to…. something informative. I decided to write about postpartum psychosis. Now, I know soap dramas have done previous stories but they’re not entirely accurate.
People always stress about post-natal depression but not so much postpartum psychosis, firstly let me give the NHS symptoms of postpartum psychosis;
- a high mood (mania) – she may talk and think too much or too quickly, feel ‘on top of the world’, or be more sociable than normal
- a loss of inhibitions
- paranoia, feeling suspicious or fearful
- restlessness or agitation
- a low mood – she may show signs of depression and be withdrawn or tearful, with a lack of energy, loss of appetite, anxiety, irritability or trouble sleeping
- severe confusion.
My official diagnosis was “post-natal depression with elements of postpartum psychosis”. The stresses of being a new mum had gotten to me, I felt I could hear people talking about me, judging me…I would lay in bed at night and was adamant I could physically hear people talking about me, I wouldn’t want to leave the house and I would completely isolate myself from the outside world. Postpartum psychosis led me to being sat on the edge of a bridge on the motorway at night, I was sectioned under the mental health act and taken to a place of safety… the NHS provides incredible support and I urge anyone with any of the above symptoms to seek medical advice. I was placed on the following medication which helped massively;
- · sertraline 200mg – an anti-depressant that is commonly used for postnatal depression and is safe to breastfeed with
- · risperidone 1mg – an anti-psychotic that unfortunately isn’t safe to breastfeed on
- · zopiclone 3.75mg – a common sleeping tablet
- · diazepam 2mg a tablet used for multiple conditions however used as a sedative in regard to mental health.
My battle is still ongoing, my battle with postpartum psychosis has come to an end, however my battle with postnatal depression is still ongoing, the stresses of being a mother (finances, family stresses and chronic health conditions) are difficult to overcome. I feel this country has a stigma on mental health especially postnatal depression, but this blog is very open and supportive to mental health.
Postpartum psychosis isn’t as commonly spoken about as postnatal depression, however is gradually becoming more common, more mums are speaking out about it and more awareness is being made. I hope this small introductory post from me has been helpful, and I look forward to writing more in the future 😊