Although it might seem highly unlikely, a recently published study from the University of Auckland reveals that new dads are also prone to postpartum depression. The data gathered by New Zealander researchers reveals that male postpartum depression is similar in terms of symptoms and manifestation to female postpartum.
Before and after giving birth, women are prone to severe hormonal changes. In some instances, extreme hormonal imbalances can bring about conditions such as postpartum depression. The condition belongs to the clinical depression family, and, according to the study, it can affect both women and men.
The telltale signs associated with postpartum depression are anxiety, irritability, decreased sex drive, feelings of low self-esteem, low energy, sleep issues, and sadness. Furthermore, individuals experiencing other symptoms such as exhaustion, social withdrawal, feeling empty, guilt, and hopelessness after childbirth might be experiencing postpartum depression.
This new study, which was published on the 15th of February in the JAMA Psychiatry Journal, shows that 14 percent of all women might experience postpartum depression. Moreover, it appears that male postpartum depression, albeit less wide-spread compared to the female version, has begun to win credibility among psychiatrists.
The team of researchers from the University of Auckland who performed this new study said that, more than often, a new dad who experiences symptoms associated with postpartum tend to believe that other stress factors are responsible for the symptoms.
According to the study, the symptoms associated with male postpartum are anxiety, depression, and a feeling of uneasiness. By isolating the signs consistent with the male version of the condition, the Auckland scientists hope that they will be able to reach and help new dads deal with their issues.
Although postpartum can be kept managed with cognitive behavioral therapy and even group therapy. Some drugs such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors might relieve some of the symptoms associated with the condition. However, there’s not enough research to prove if SSRIs can improve the patient’s condition or not.
In order to determine the gender distribution of postpartum depression, the team of researchers requested the assistance of approximately 3,500 couples from New Zealand. Each couple was asked to complete a set of questionnaires regarding their mental health before and after giving birth.
Using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale, the team of researchers from the University of Auckland discovered that new dads could indeed experience the symptoms of this condition. However, the number of men with postpartum is significantly smaller than in the case of women.
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