How to overcome postpartum/postnatal depression? What are the causes and is it common to feel anxiety, sleepless nights, fear symptoms after giving birth, especially after the first pregnancy?
Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuhu
Congratulations on your bundle of joy!
Sister, new mothers do experience something known as baby blues after childbirth. It includes mood swings, fear, anxiety, crying spells, and difficulty in sleeping. It usually begins within the first two to three days after the delivery and may last up to two weeks.
However, some mothers may experience a more severe and long-lasting form of depression, which is postpartum depression. There are many things that may trigger postpartum depression, such as hormonal changes, a complication in the delivery, fear of inability to care for the child well, the child’s aversion to breastfeeding, or self-image issues like weight gain. Proper treatment can help one manage such symptoms.
Here are a few ways that may help one to get out of postpartum depression:
Sister, du’a is the weapon of the believer. So, make lots of du’a, and cry out in front of The All-Hearing.
In addition, here are a few du’as from the Sunnah that you can recite.
- The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “No person suffers any anxiety or grief, and says:
Allaahumma innee ‘abduka wa ibn ‘abdika wa ibn amatika, naasiyati bi yadika, maadin fiyya hukmuka, ‘adlun fiyya qadaa’uka, as’aluka bi kulli ismin huwa laka sammayta bihi nafsaka aw anzaltahu fi kitaabika aw ‘allamtahu ahadan min khalqika aw ista’tharta bihi fi ‘ilm il-ghaybi ‘andak an taj’ala al-Qur’aana rabee’ qalbi wa noor sadri wa jalaa’a huzni wa dhahaaba hammi
(O Allah, I am Your slave, son of Your slave, son of Your female slave, my forelock is in Your hand, Your command over me is forever executed and Your decree over me is just. I ask You by every Name belonging to You which You named Yourself with, or revealed in Your Book, or You taught to any of Your creation, or You have preserved in the knowledge of the unseen with You, that You make the Qur’an the life of my heart and the light of my breast, and a departure for my sorrow and a release for my anxiety.)
but Allah will take away his sorrow and grief, and give him in their stead joy…” [Ahmad 3528]
2. The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “The du’a of the person who is in distress is:
Allaahumma rahmataka arjoo fa laa takilni ilaa nafsi tarfat ‘ayn wa aslih li sha’ni kullahu laa ilaaha illa anta
(O Allah, for Your mercy I hope, so do not leave me in charge of my affairs even for the blink of an eye; rectify all my affairs. There is no god except You.)” [Abu Dawood 5090, Ahmad 27898]
- Seek Professional Help
Don’t be embarrassed. Postpartum depression is common. Share your symptoms with your doctor so that a useful treatment plan can be created for you. It is necessary to distinguish between a short-term case of postpartum baby blues and a more severe form of depression.
- Bond Well With Your Baby
The emotional attachment between the child and a mother is very important. This bond helps the child to communicate and interact well with the people around him/her throughout life.
- Don’t Hesitate to Ask for Help
You cannot manage everything alone. Take time to heal. Don’t keep your feelings to yourself. Share your experiences with your loved ones ― both good and bad. Vent out the emotions. Don’t get exhausted. The more you take care of your physical and mental wellbeing, the better you’ll feel.
- Skip the Household Work
Don’t be so particular about keeping things right. Give priority to yourself and your baby. Concentrate on self and the baby. Relax.
- Get Back to Exercise
It’s very important to do some breathing exercises and a few other simple exercises. Don’t overdo it. Do it according to your ability. Even if you walk for just half an hour, that will be enough.
- Don’t Compromise on Your Sleep
We understand it is very difficult for a new mother to get complete 8 hours of sleep. But make sure you make it up during the daytime when the baby is sleeping, or give the baby to other members of the family, and rest. Deprived sleep may worsen the depression.
- Take Care of Yourself
Find small ways to pamper yourself. Go out for a walk, get out in the sun ― sunlight lifts one’s mood. Do something of your interest, something you enjoy.
- Eat Your Meals on Time
Take proper nutritious meals. What you eat affects your mood and the quality of breastmilk. Eat healthy.
- Communicate With Your Partner
Sleepless nights and taking care of your baby may leave you exhausted and overwhelmed. So, make sure you don’t get frustrated with your partner. Instead, communicate well and make sure you both share the responsibilities.
May Allah ﷻ help and protect the mothers and their children with good health and eemaan. May your child be the coolness of your eyes.
Written by: Fouzia Rehaman
Edited by: The Editorial Team
© The Islamic Reflections Blog