Postnatal depression

Postnatal depression is a type of depression some women experience after they have had a baby.

It usually develops in the first four to six weeks after childbirth, although in some cases it may not develop for several months.

There are many symptoms of postnatal depression, such as low mood, feeling unable to cope and difficulty sleeping, but many women are not aware they have the condition.

It's common to experience mood changes, irritability and tearfulness after birth; the so-called ‘baby blues’. These normally clear up within a few weeks. But if a woman experiences persistent symptoms, it could well be the result of postnatal depression.

It is important for partners, family and friends to recognise signs of postnatal depression as early as possible and seek professional advice.

We have a specialist service to support women who are experiencing severe mental health problems during pregnancy and up to a year after birth. To find out more about this service, visit the Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service page