Britney Spears said she has perinatal depression. Here’s what it is.

When Britney Spears announced her third pregnancy in an Instagram post on Monday, she made another revelation: she said she suffered from perinatal depression during a previous pregnancy.

“I have to say it was absolutely horrible,” Spears wrote.

Spears, 40, has two children – Sean Preston, 16, and Jaden James, 15 – with ex-husband Kevin Federline. She did not specify when she suffered from perinatal depression, what her symptoms were or how long they lasted.

But his post echoed, leaving more than 2 million people with likes and comments. “Women didn’t talk about it then,” he wrote. “Thanks to Jesus, we do not have to keep that pain a secret.”

Spears is not alone: ​​Research shows that 1 in 5 pregnant women experience perinatal depression.

“The experience of depression after pregnancy and childbirth is very common,” said Karen Dub Tina, an associate professor at the University of Illinois School of Social Work in Arbana-Champaign.

For black parents with postpartum depression, finding help can be difficult

But for Rachel Roberto, who is eight-and-a-half months pregnant and experiencing perinatal depression, she feels like she has no awareness of the condition.

“I always look at articles about postpartum depression, and what warning signs should be heeded,” said 28-year-old Robertello, a graduate student living in VA, Centerville. But “no one talks about perinatal depression,” he added.

Unlike postpartum depression, which occurs after childbirth, perinatal depression begins during pregnancy and lasts until the “almost two-year window” – from the beginning of pregnancy to the end of the first year after birth, according to Tup Tina.

Research suggests that perinatal depression is “caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors,” including changes in life stress, childbirth needs, and hormonal changes during and after pregnancy, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Symptoms include “feelings such as excessive sadness, anxiety and fatigue, which can make it difficult to perform daily tasks, including caring for oneself or others”.

According to Tape Tina, other symptoms may include “any sharp change in your normal mood,” such as irritability, “inability to enjoy the pleasures of pregnancy, difficulty sleeping and loss of appetite,” she said.

Early detection of these symptoms is “very important,” Tabb Dina added: For most people, the signs and symptoms of postpartum depression begin during pregnancy.

Postpartum depression occurs after about 15 percent of births, according to the NIMH, and research has found that those at risk for perinatal and postpartum depression include adolescents; Black and Asian people; People experiencing domestic violence and those dealing with chronic medical conditions; And people living in rural areas. Studies also show that perinatal depression may become more common during infections, with 1 in 4 pregnant women experiencing depression.

Postpartum depression can affect new mothers for at least three years after childbirth, the report says.

But Dub Dina said doctors do not always discuss or screen out the symptoms of depression for pregnant women. And a 2010 study in the Journal of Women’s Health found that the vast majority of those who were positively screened for postpartum depression did not receive psychiatric treatment from their providers during or after childbirth.

Roberto said she has been suffering from depression for many years, but her symptoms during pregnancy include fatigue and lethargy about pregnancy, which “make her more vulnerable.”

“It was very difficult because … [my husband and I] We want children, this is not an unintended consequence, ”he said.

To cope, she “tried to do every fun thing on the list of things to do during pregnancy” – including babysitting and maternity photography, she said – but “I feel like I’m experiencing movements and not really excited.”

Roberdello expressed his concern to his doctors during his first three months, and they increased the dose of the antidepressant Zoloft, which he said helped “a little”.

But until last month, when he was in his third trimester, Robertello Perinatal learned about depression, which he discovered by googling his symptoms, he said.

Tamar Kennedy, a 42-year-old Phoenix-based photographer and alternative author, used Google to diagnose perinatal depression a few years after she became pregnant nearly two decades ago, she said.

“We’ve all heard of postpartum depression … but I’m never heard of depression during pregnancy,” Kanadi said, adding that the paranoia that her baby would be taken away from her was her main symptom.

Dub Tina said Google’s self-assessment tool for postpartum depression could, in fact, be a useful source of information to help understand potential perinatal or postpartum depression symptoms. (The tool states that this is not an official medical diagnosis and that people should talk to their doctors for further advice.)

Canada, which saw Spears’ post about her new pregnancy and past experience with perinatal depression, said, “She did not want to do a big thing about it … Yes, this is something that happens to women, and one thing. I’m worried, ready to deal with it.” ”

Roberto, for his part, said that Spears “actually used the word ‘perinatal depression’,” adding that he was “delighted to see the recognition.” [of] That.”

Spears, who was released from her conservatory in November, testified last June that her conservator’s management had refused to allow her to remove her IUD so she could try to have another child. In her Instagram post on Monday, she said she would do “yoga every day” during pregnancy this time.

For those who suffer from or at risk for developing perinatal depression, it includes medications prescribed by a doctor, which Dub Tina calls the “gold standard” for those suffering from perinatal depression, although she acknowledged that some pregnant women prefer to avoid taking the drug. Pregnancy.

NIMH recommends that pregnant women “work with their healthcare provider to weigh the risks and benefits of treatment” and that antidepressants may take six to eight weeks to work. It also states that people may need to try different medications “before they are found to have side effects that can improve and cope with their symptoms.”

Non-pharmaceutical options include home visits with cognitive-behavioral therapists – who are particularly vulnerable to those who have already had other children, who are unable to leave them alone – and group parenting care sessions, which will allow people. To share their experiences and symptoms with other pregnant women.

“You can listen to someone else and say, ‘I do not know if this is normal,'” he said.

Roberto, back to that kind of discussion, turned to the pregnancy use of the peanut, saying: “It’s a comfort, reading other’s posts, someone commenting to you, ‘What you do is valid.’ ”

Canadian Pregnancy has been behind him for a long time, but she works with pregnant women all the time through her photography business, photographing newborns and coordinating maternity shootings.

He said he looked at Spears’ post and wondered how he could do more to share information about perinatal depression with struggling parents.

Perhaps, he said he could start by putting a link to the resources on his website.

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