Wednesday, September 22, 2010

PTSD in childbirth.

I recently saw this article in

It says that around 9% of women meet the criteria for post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after childbirth. Trauma can look like:
-Intrusive memories that are upsetting about an event.
-An event where you felt helpless and horrified, feared for the life of yourself or another person.
-Efforts to avoid any triggers that might remind you of the event.

Please know that good treatments are available. EMDR is one, as is cognitive behavioral therapy. Don't let PTSD rob you of precious moments bonding with your baby. The author says that PTSD never goes away and that's not true, it can be resolved or at least improved for most people. It is not unusual for somebody with a history of PTSD to have it re-triggered with a new traumatic event. For example, a childhood sexual abuse survivor whose trauma is resolved as a young adult might find it re-opened after a traumatic event in adulthood like a traumatic birth experience. This does not mean that you are weak or back at "square one." This means that you already have many of the skills needed to get through the trauma and you deserve support. Talk to a counselor, your midwife or doctor, or find free local support groups for postpartum women. There are also online forums, such as where you can talk to other moms, or use their warm line for support.

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