WGPlus (Archive)

New Mums can have a tough time mentally

NICE is calling on general practice staff to assess the mental health of all women who have recently given birth, as fears some may be left unsupported.   Some symptoms of mental health problems, such as changes to appetite or sleeping patterns, can be masked by what is considered normal for pregnant and postnatal women.

NICE suggest that the routine six-week postnatal appointment could provide an opportunity for new mothers to be asked about their mental health.

It is estimated that about 1 in 8 women experience anxiety or depression whilst pregnant, and up to 1 in 5 do during the first year after childbirth.  And a recent report by NHS Improving Quality found that women’s experience of treatment for mental health problems during pregnancy or afterwards was variable.

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