Pregnancy and early parenthood

Depression and anxiety can happen at any time – but we know women are more likely to experience these conditions during pregnancy and the year following the birth of a baby (also known as the perinatal period).

Pregnancy and adjusting to a new baby is rewarding, but it can also bring significant changes and challenges. While some days will be better than others, for some women who experience mental health problems, every day is a struggle.

Just like the physical health problems that can crop up during pregnancy, birth or early parenthood (e.g. high blood pressure), mental health problems can also happen to anyone. The important thing is to know how to recognise the signs and to seek help early.

Depression and anxiety are the most common types of mental health problems in the perinatal period, but other serious mental health problems, such as bipolar disorder and puerperal (postpartum) psychosis, can also occur at this time.

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Stories

  • Charmaine38
    I had never been one for staying in, now I was too traumatised to go out
    Read Charmaine's story
  • Tracey38
    I have learnt to deal with my depression, and I am proud of it!
    Read Tracey's story
  • Joanna38
    When I have bad days I know that I will get better, and I have hope for a bright future
    Read Joanna's story
  • Julina38
    I didn't realise I was experiencing postnatal depression because I was bonding well with my baby
    Read Julina's story
  • Meredith35
    I had been depressed before but had not experienced such intense anxiety
    Read Meredith's story
  • Erin27
    I blamed him for making me feel like I couldn't cope. It was all too much
    Read Erin's story
  • Mariette
    Even though I was a mess at the time, I did something really right, I told everyone who would listen that I needed help
    Read Mariette's story
  • Suzie35
    I had no help and no support and did not understand the way this all worked
    Read Suzie's story
  • Anonymous
    I know with the proper treatment I can get back to my old self again
    Read Anonymous's story
  • Marion40
    I love my husband more than words can say for being my rock
    Read Marion's story
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