Did you know? 1 in 5 mothers experience depression or anxiety during pregnancy or postpartum? Did you know? 1 in 5 mothers experience depression or anxiety during pregnancy or postpartum?

Did you know? 1 in 5 mothers experience depression or anxiety during pregnancy or postpartum?

April 22, 2019

Maternal mental health is an issue that affects us all. Our early relationships with our mothers sets the stage for how we develop and interact with the world around us. A new mom’s attentiveness to her newborn (and her other children) is crucially important.  

As part of Maternal Mental Health Awareness Month this May, Epiphany Center’s Nurse Practitioner, Melissa Belbahri, gave an impactful presentation to our program staff on how anxiety and postpartum depression are so prevalent and undertreated. Postpartum issues are more common than you would think. One in five women will suffer from a maternal mental health (MMH) disorder in the United States and only fifteen percent of women will receive treatment. Maternal mental health disorders include anxiety, depression, PTSD, and postpartum psychosis.

Although all women are vulnerable regardless of the zip code they live in, those most vulnerable are the type of mothers that Epiphany Center serves: mothers with a history of substance abuse and trauma, who lack social support, and who are socially and economically isolated. At Epiphany Center, we strive to ensure our mothers do not suffer these disorders in silence by providing regular screenings and treatment referrals.

We help mothers get past the stigma of mental health and crossing that threshold often starts with a dialogue. When that conversation begins, everyone benefits. The effect of such healing – the healing of one woman extending into her family and far into the community – is staggering.

Untreated maternal mental health disorders cause adverse birth outcomes, impaired maternal-infant bonding, poor infant growth, childhood emotional and behavioral problems, and significant medical and economic costs. Epiphany Center strengthens families and communities, one mother at a time.

Relevant websites:

Post-partum Depression

Peri-natal Mental Health Alliance for Women of Color

The 10-question Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS)

California Legislative Information on Maternal Mental Health

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