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Postpartum Clinic of Tulsa

Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders

Dr. Karla Kerby, Ph.D. LMFT
Brittany Square Office Park
2840 E 51st St # 210, Tulsa, OK 74105
918-221-4904
postpartumclinicoftulsa@cox.net

Services

Normal Postpartum Adjustment

Baby Blues

Postpartum Depression

Postpartum Anxiety

Postpartum Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Postpartum Psychosis

Paternal Postpartum/
Anxiety

Having a baby, whether it is the first one or the fourth one, from the first day until the last day can be a beautiful and exciting journey. However, sometimes the journey is not so beautiful, and things don’t go as you had expected. Postpartum Clinic of Tulsa was established to focus only on perinatal mood and anxiety issues including those related to infertility, miscarriage, premature birth, having a baby placed in the NICU, pregnancy loss, and pregnancy after loss. During pregnancy or postpartum, 1 in 5 mothers can experience a mood or anxiety disorder with symptoms that are more than just the “baby blues.” It may be surprising, but fathers can experience paternal depression or anxiety, also.

Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders (PMADs)

Normal Postpartum Adjustment

Most new mothers experience some postpartum symptoms during the first few months. If these symptoms interfere with a mother’s normal coping abilities, functioning, or parenting, something more serious may be happening.

Baby Blues

“I feel sad, irritable, and exhausted. Do I have postpartum depression?”

“Baby blues” are normal after delivery. Between 60-80% of women experience  exhaustion, irritation, and sadness after having given birth. Symptoms typically begin 1-3 days post-delivery and may last 2-14 days. If your feelings persist longer, you may be experiencing a perinatal mood or anxiety disorder.

Postpartum Depression

“I thought I had the Baby Blues, but it’s past two weeks. What’s going on?”

More than 15% of women experience Postpartum Depression, perhaps even more given that the diagnosis is highly unreported. Any woman who has given birth within the past 12 months can receive the diagnosis if she experiences the following symptoms: sadness, tearfulness, loss of interest or pleasure in things you used to enjoy, anxiety or agitation, lack of energy, difficulty concentrating, sleep or appetite changes, feelings of guilt, shame, or hopelessness.

Postpartum Anxiety

“My mind won’t stop racing with constant worry. Is something wrong with me?”

New mothers feel they have 1,000 things to worry about after the arrival of a baby. However, if feelings of anxiety interfere with overall functioning, it may be Postpartum Anxiety. Roughly 1 in10 women experiences postpartum anxiety after giving birth and 6% of women experience it while still pregnant. Symptoms include: constant worry, feeling something bad is going to happen, sleep/appetite changes, physical symptoms of dizziness, racing heart or nausea.

Postpartum Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

“I’ve never been diagnosed with OCD, but I have obsessive thoughts that something bad will happen to my baby. Why can’t I stop thinking like this?”

A mother may experience Postpartum OCD without having a previous diagnosis. Three to five percent of mothers report feeling they cannot escape intrusive, irrational, and upsetting thoughts unless they engage in a repetitive act. You may be experiencing Postpartum OCD if you encounter any of the following symptoms within twelve months of giving birth: obsessions (persistent, repetitive, intrusive thoughts/mental images) about the baby, compulsions (having to do certain things over and over to try to reduce fears and obsessions about your baby). Compulsions may include constant cleaning, repeated checking on the baby or items, counting or reordering things. Fear of being left alone with the baby, hypervigilance in protecting the baby, a sense of horror about these obsessions.

Postpartum Psychosis

“I’m having some really strange thoughts about my baby and sometimes I feel like others know what I’m thinking. Is this normal?”

Postpartum Psychosis is rare and has a sudden onset. It is serious and requires immediate medical attention. Symptoms include: delusions or strange beliefs that feel real, hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that aren’t there), feeling confused or disconnected from reality, decreased need for or inability to sleep, difficulty communicating at times, paranoia and suspiciousness. NOTE: It is imperative to get immediate professional attention.

Paternal Postpartum/Anxiety

“I’m a man and not supposed to feel like this, only women get these problems. What is happening to me?”

With a change in family dynamics after the birth, up to 10 percent of new fathers experience paternal depression or anxiety. The risk doubles if the mother is experiencing mood difficulties. Paternal mood disorders can lead to marital problems and decreased bonding with the baby.

Dr. Karla Kerby, Ph.D. LMFT
Brittany Square Office Park
2840 E 51st St #210, Tulsa, OK 74105
918-221-4904
postpartumclinicoftulsa@cox.net