Postnatal Psychosis #DayofLight

This is part 3 of a reproduction of a research paper I wrote on postnatal mental health as part of my Developing Doulas course. I’m posting this on my blog now as part of the #DayofLight

Postnatal Psychosis

Postnatal Psychosis is a rarer and more serious mental health condition that can develop after birth. 4

Symptoms of postnatal psychosis include:

  • bipolar-like symptoms – feeling depressed one moment and very happy or excitable (manic) the next 4
  • believing things that are obviously untrue and illogical (delusions) – often relating to the baby, such as the mother thinking the baby is dying or that either herself or the baby have magical powers 4
  • seeing and hearing things that are not really there (hallucinations) – this is often the mother hearing voices telling her to harm the baby 4

Postnatal psychosis is regarded as an emergency and requires immediate medical care. If there is a danger of imminent harm to the mother, the baby or someone with them, then contacting the duty psychiatrist at the local A&E department is the appropriate course of action. 4

References

  1. NHS Choices. 2011. NHS Choices: Feeling depressed after childbirth. http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/feeling-depressed-after-birth.aspx . Accessed 15 Feb 2013.
  2. NHS Choices. 2012. NHS Choices: Postnatal Depression. http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/postnataldepression/pages/introduction.aspx . Accessed 15 February 2013.
  3. Dennis C-L, Creedy DK. Psychosocial and psychological interventions for preventing postpartum depression. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2004, Issue 4. Art. No.: CD001134. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD001134.pub2
  4. NHS Choices. 2012. NHS Choices: Postnatal Depression – Symptoms. http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Postnataldepression/Pages/Symptoms.aspx . Accessed 15 February 2013.
  5. NHS Choices. 2012. NHS Choices: Postnatal Depression – Causes. http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Postnataldepression/Pages/Causes.aspx . Accessed 16 March 2013.
  6. NICE. 2007. Antenatal and Postnatal Mental Health: The NICE Guideline on Clinical Management and Service Guidance. http://www.nice.org.uk/nicemedia/live/11004/30431/30431.pdf . Accessed 16 March 2013.
  7. NICE. 2010. CG45 Antenatal and postnatal mental health: understanding NICE guidance. http://guidance.nice.org.uk/CG45/PublicInfo/pdf/English . Accessed 25 March 2013.
  8. Mind. 2010. Understanding postnatal depression. http://mind.org.uk/assets/0001/7313/Understanding_postnatal_depression_2010.pdf . Accessed 25 March 2013.
  9. NHS Choices. 2011. NHS Choices: Post-traumatic stress disorder. http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/post-traumatic-stress-disorder/pages/introduction.aspx . Accessed 25 March 2013.
  10. The Birth Trauma Association. What is Birth Trauma? http://www.birthtraumaassociation.org.uk/what_is_trauma.htm . Accessed 25 March 2013.
  11. NHS Choices. 2011. NHS Choices: Post-traumatic stress disorder – Treatment. http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Post-traumatic-stress-disorder/Pages/Treatment.aspx . Accessed 25 March 2013.
  12. Hodnett, ED., Gates, S., Hofmeyr, GJ. & Sakala, C. Continuous support for women during childbirth Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 3.

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