UW Department of Psychiatry
6001 Research Park Blvd.
Madison, WI 53719-1179
Postpartum depression (PPD) is prevalent, recognizable and treatable. It is different from the Postpartum Blues, which resolves by about two weeks. Depression in the postpartum period occurs in 10-15% of all new mothers (about 1 out of 8), with rates up to twice as high for women living in poverty. Postpartum depression can occur any time during the first year after the birth of a baby, although symptoms usually begin in the first few months. Postpartum depression can affect how a woman feels about herself, and how she feels about parenting. It is important to address symptoms of postpartum depression directly, as research has shown that postpartum depression left untreated may last 6 months or longer.
Recognition and treatment are important components of improving both the mother’s quality of life and that of her baby and family. With treatment, it is shown that the impact of PPD on babies may be minimal. But, if the depression remains untreated and becomes a chronic, recurrent condition, it can impact the mother-infant attachment relationship and can contribute to delays in the child’s cognitive and language development, behavioral problems or other psychological issues.
If you, or someone you know, are experiencing symptoms of Postpartum Depression, please call the UW Postpartum Depression Treatment Program at (608) 263-5000