Hang on folks – put your seatbelts on and make sure you keep all arms and legs inside the vehicle at all times.There’s another shocking study involving sleep and Perinatal Mood Disorders.
It IS important to be aware of your sleep patterns during the postpartum period as sleep deprivation can certainly make you grumpy. It can also cause a number of other issues if not corrected quickly.
That said, a new study published in the July 1st issue of the Journal SLEEP, states that Postpartum Depression may aggravate already impaired sleep quality.
What does that mean exactly?
It means that if you’re already not sleeping well, your visits with dear Mr. Sandman may become even more insignificant if you develop a Perinatel Mood Disorder.
Interestingly enough, 21% of the moms involved reported depression during pregnancy while 46% had experienced a previous bout of depression prior to conceiving.
The risk factors discovered by the researchers involved “Depression, previous sleep problems, being a first time mother, not exclusively breastfeeding or having a younger or male infant were factors associated with poor postpartum sleep quality.”
They also discovered that “Better maternal sleep was associated with the baby sleeping in a different room.”
I find it interesting that not exclusively breastfeeding was a factor in poor postpartum sleep quality. Many times mothers feel that if they could just stop nursing and give a bottle so others in the family could help with the feedings, they would be able to sleep better. I know I finally got rest when I stopped pumping and/or nursing. I do concur with the baby sleeping in a different room – all three of my children slept in their own room in a crib from the day we brought them home from the hospital. We did not want to wean the child from our room at a later date. Those who choose to co-sleep should seriously consider this particular risk, especially if depression is an issue.
The lesson here?
Moms – if you’re not sleeping well, tell your care provider. EMPHASIZE that this is not normal for you.
Caregivers – If a new mom tells you she’s tired, LISTEN. Don’t brush it off as just a new mom thing. Dig beneath the surface. She may be trying to tell you she’s depressed and doesn’t know how else to put it.