Postpartum Blues, Postpartum Depression, And Homoeopathy

Nowadays the most commonly seen conditions during postnatal care are postpartum blues and postpartum depression. One is acute in nature and the other one is chronic in nature. Though both these conditions are seen previously, now the incidence is comparatively more than in the previous years. Postpartum blues are more common in women than postpartum depression. Postpartum blues resolve themselves within few days. Whereas postpartum depression takes a long time with therapeutic measures. Here the homeopathic medicine plays an effective role in treating postpartum depression, along with psychological counseling. As homeopathy considers the patient as a whole it can provide effective treatment in such conditions.

Postpartum Blues


It is a transient state of mental illness observed 4-5 days after delivery and lasts for few days.
• Nearly 50% of postpartum people suffer from the problem.
• Manifestations are depression, anxiety, tearfulness, insomnia, helplessness, and negative feelings towards the infant.
• No specific metabolic or endocrine abnormalities have been detected.
• But lowered tryptophan level is observed.
• It suggests altered neurotransmitter function.
• Treatment is reassurance and psychological support by the family members.


Postpartum Depression


It is more gradual in onset over the first 4-6 months following delivery or abortion or it may be the after-effects that happen during her antenatal period.
• It is observed in 10-20% of mothers.
• Changes in the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis may be a cause.
• Manifested by loss of energy and appetite, insomnia, social withdrawal, irritability, and even suicidal attitude.
• Risk of recurrence is high in subsequent pregnancies.
• Treatment is started early with general supportive measures and medications.


HOMOEOPATHIC APPROACH


AURUM METALLICUM: 

Depression feels like an inescapable black cloud. Very hard on themselves, feel that they should have given birth ‘better’. Feel worthless, will do what is required of them but joylessly. The constant feeling that they are neglecting their duty. All symptoms are aggravated at night.


CIMICIFUGA RACEMOSA:

 Profound gloominess and sadness. Feels trapped. Will talk incessantly about the birth with grief and disappointment, jumping from one aspect to another. May have had a long, exhausting labor with over- sensitiveness to the pain and significant after pains.


PULSATILLA NIGRICANS: 

Great sadness and feeling of loss after the birth. May have a lot of intervention because of the position of the baby. Very sensitive, vulnerable, and insecure- abandonment issues. Wildly fluctuating moods. Craves attention and may manipulate to get it.


IGNATIA AMARA:

 Lots of spasmodic sobbing and sighing may even alternate laughing and crying. They are wretched when they realize that the fantasy of having a baby does not match up to reality both in terms of birth and post-partum. Grief(++) over disappointed expectations.


SEPIA OFFICINALIS:

Complete detachment from partner and baby. Loss of freedom issues may want to run away from it all. Flashes of anger. Tears(++) especially when recounting her story. May have a difficult pregnancy as well as birth.


NATRUM MURIATICUM: 

Introverted in depression. They Will often not ask for help but rather try to manage it on their own, amelioration consolation. Crying in private(+), will hold on to the distress of difficult labor and relieve it.


ANACARDIUM ORIENTALE: 

Discouraged/ despair about the birth, blames everyone for her experience of birth. Very easily offended. Irresistible urge to curse and swear. Feelings of separation from the world. No confidence in her ability to care for the baby. Suspicious of help offered.


Homeopathic treatment plays an effective role in postpartum blues and depression. During the postnatal period, the mother and child are benefited from homeopathic medicines. The medicines above listed are commonly indicated which are seen clinically.