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Antenatal depression - Is there such thing?

Hi everyone,

Just wondered if there was such a thing as antenatel depression or if anyone has had it or know someone who has?

Thank you,

Amy xx

[Modified by: February baby on 30 November 2007 17:56:57 ]


  • Yes there is such a thing - sorry don't know anyone or have any personal experience - but I do know it definitely exists although I don't think it is often diagnosed. Did you ever see any of that 'make me a baby' series on the BBC earlier in the year? One of the expectant mums on that had it. maybe google or NHS direct for some info? Dunno really but it does exist!
  • hey amy i googled this cos i think its very important. i went thorugh this for a brief spell.. depression is a world of its own and there should be recognition of what it can do to people

    """While hormones are often blamed for many of the mood swings and other emotional and psychological happenings in pregnancy they are only one part of the picture when it comes to pregnancy and depression. Sometimes the stress of pregnancy brings on depressive symptoms, even when the pregnancy was planned. These feeling might intensify if the pregnancy is complicated or unplanned or if life itself is stressful.

    Other know stress causing factors are sometimes brought on simply because of the changes that pregnancy potentially brings like moving to a new house or apartment to increase space or to have a more baby-friendly environment. Sometimes this might mean career changes for one or both parents. These things typically cause stress and potentially depression and are frequent occurrences in pregnancy.

    The real problem with depression in pregnancy can have a negative impact on good prenatal care, particularly in the areas of nutrition, sleep habits, exercise and following care instructions from the doctor or midwife. Substance abuse, including alcohol and cigarette smoking, also tends to be higher in pregnant women who report depression. There are also the factors that we commonly think of as risks for prenatal depression such as a higher risk of suicide.

    Women report that the most troubling problem for them is often the feeling of disassociation with the baby.

    "I simply feel detached," reports one depressed mom-to-be. "We planned this pregnancy and I'm so confused, I expected to be happy. But it's this awful cycle of depression. I feel depressed because I'm depressed."

    Many of the signs of depression mimic pregnancy symptoms. It can be hard to determine what is normal fatigue in pregnancy and what is depression. This can lead to an underreporting of the problem. There is also a tendency of people to ignore depression in pregnancy simply because this is supposed to be a happy time in life, this includes the pregnant woman herself.

    Signs of Depression

    Problems concentrating
    Problems with sleeping
    Changes in eating habits
    Feeling anxious
    Feeling blue"""

    hope this helps??

    if u google it there is quite a bit on it. are u asking for yourself? if so do speak to ur gp and mw they are so supportive when it comes to this. hope ur ok?

    beautiful pic by the way, wish i had had one of those scans!
    holly xxx

    [Modified by: hollylizzy on November 30, 2007 06:03 PM]

    [Modified by: hollylizzy on November 30, 2007 06:05 PM]
  • Hi Amy, it's Ally. Hope you don't mind me jumping in here but I've read about this in a few of my preg books and it definately exists as a condition. Are you asking this question for you hun? Are you feeling a bit down? It wouldn't be surprising after being on bed rest for so long, you must be fed up to the back teeth with being at home. Just wanted to say that if you want to chat I'm here anytime. Hugs xx

  • Yes, as everyone else has said the condition does exisit and it is as common as postnatal depression but it just isn't diagnosed or recognised as much as postnatal depression is. It was a subject that was recently covered on This Morning and they have an article on their website about it...

    There is also a registered charity that deals with exactly this kind of thing, this is their website..

    I think that if you do feel you are possibly suffering at all it is important that you talk to your midwife or someone that can help you and don't suffer and worry in silence. Take care x
  • I had antenatal depression with my first baby. I was so desparately sad all the time and had no drive to do anything or see anyone. I could never understand it because our baby was very much wanted. I was told during the pregnancy that I was very likely to experience postnatal depression too, but that turned out to be far from the truth!! I was blissfully happy! I'm expecting my second baby now (27th Jan), and I have a 'down' day about once a week but I think thats pretty normal!!
  • It does exist. I had it with my first pregnancy too. I guess it was triggered because i was at uni at the time and lived with my oh in a uni staff flat that wasn't very nice. Also, I just felt to sleepy and sad a lot of the time. None of my friends understood my position as they were always out having fun and I just felt so isolated.

    It's a lot better this time around as I've made friends in my local area who are understanding as they've got kids and one is pregnant as well. It always helps to have others to talk to who can understand you.
  • Hi I had with my first aswell. Mine came on because I was stuck in hospital for 6 weeks prior to having my lo. I was told that they would then keep a closer eye on me after the birth as women who have depression before the birth are more likely to get post natal depression.
  • Thank you very much for all your answers.
    I was so embarresed to ask this question.

    I'm sure its nothing and i'm just hormonal or something, i don't think i'd be able to talk to a doctor about it anyway!
    I don't understand why I feel like this sometimes as this baby was planned and so wanted. I just feel guilty when i have all these bad thoughts and feel sorry for this baby having me as its mother.
    I was in hospital at 16 weeks when they discovered my cervix was open and were unable to stitch it so i've had to leave my job and have been on bedrest since.

    I'm doing great though as the doctors were worried i wouldn't get past the 24 week mark. So i know its defo for the best.

    I am just going a bit crazy being stuck at home all day everyday. Its been 12 weeks now! Luckily my hubby is fab, he does everything for me, all the shopping cooking and cleaning but I just miss my independence, having my own money and just seeing someone else other than hubby and occasional midwife!

    Thank you again, I really appreciate it xx
  • I had ante natal depression when I was pregnant first time. I don't know why it happened- I don't think there was anything specific that I felt down about I just felt down a lot of the time.

    I had very bad temper tantrums and was actually quite violent towards oh. I am very ashamed about this but I couldn't control myself. I did speak to the mw who suggested anti depressants but I didn't want them at the time.

    I did feel depressed after the baby also but still didn't take any med's. Looking back I can see that my condition just got continually worse until after my second child was born I finally held my hands up when she was six months old and admitted 'defeat.' I went to doc and got anti depressants which made a really big difference- I was on these for 2 and a haf years and have only come off them now that I am pregnant again.

    I am telling you this in the hope that you can see that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Looking back now I should have taken help form the beginning. Most anti depressants aren't suitable when pregnant vbut there are some. Another option you have is to try something herbal- I personally haven't done this before but its worth a try.

    Good luck whatever you decide
  • I am really pleased to read this. I have suffered from depression in the past and was on medication which I came off of but since finding out I am pregnant the symptoms have come back big time even bringing my panic attacks back with them. I have felt so guilty that I am not happily bouncing everywhere and just want to curl up in bed but reading from other sufferers has put my mind at rest a bit. Have got to go back to docs next week to go back on medication as she wouldnt let me go back on it til am 12 wks. I think this is a lot of what caused my split with hubby nearly 2 wks ago. Good thing is we are talking and going to counselling together and hopefully we will get back together coz we both want this lo soo much.
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