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Most women suffer from some form of the “baby blues” following the birth of their baby. The baby blues, beginning a few days after birth, can cause sadness, moodiness, and sleeplessness, but they are typically mixed with periods of happiness. The baby blues usually end one to three weeks after delivery. Postpartum depression, by contrast, is more persistent and severe.

Symptoms of postpartum depression (PPD) include:

• Anxiety, restlessness, or irritability (inability to sleep even when baby does)
• Feelings of extreme sadness, hopelessness, or worthlessness
• Difficulty caring for the baby
• Obsessions and compulsions about the baby’s health and well-being
• Loss of interest in once-pleasurable activities
• Persistent thoughts of death or suicide

If you are suffering from PPD, know that you are not alone. The nationally renowned Day Program at Women & Infants treats women suffering from postpartum depression as well as depression and anxiety disorders during pregnancy. For more information, call (401) 274-1122 ext. 2870. Another great resource is Post Partum Progress which offers women information, support, and inspiration.

Kristen Kardos, MA Ed., and Kathy McGuigan, MSW, the co-founders of RI New Moms Connection provide affordable, accessible pregnancy and new mom groups throughout Rhode Island. In "New Moms Tips" they share their knowledge, resources, and helpful ideas for moms just beginning their journey into parenthood or moms that may need a little refresher.

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