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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Can you get postnatal depression 6 months after the birth?

    My wife seems extremely low and antisocial since having our baby 6 months ago. Some days I have to stay home from work to care for our child. Is it too late to seek help for postnatal depression? Isn’t this something that happens shortly after birth, not 6 months down the line?
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  • Dr Strang runs a workshop for parents to be and new parents on “Emotional Transition to Parenthood”. She is also a qualified counsellor.Becoming a parent ... View Profile

    The transition to parenthood brings with it many  and different challanges for most people….it sounds like you are experiencing those challanges now.

    Post natal depression is a depression that is diagnosed any time from shortly after the baby is born up until 2 years after the birth. 

    It is not at all too late to seek help for your wife…feeling low and avoiding social contact are symptoms that are consistent with postnatal depression- it is worth making a long appointment with her GP to discuss in more detail what she is experiencing. The GP may then refer her on to a psychologist and/or discuss other treatment such as medication.



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  • Dr Lucinda Smith is a perinatal psychiatrist, Co Founder and Director of GLOW Perinatal Emotional Health and Wellbeing Clinic Berwick, who has worked in perinatal ... View Profile

    You certainly can experience postnatal depression 6 months after the birth of a baby. Every womans experience is different and symptoms can emerge at any time. In fact research has shown that rates of depression may be higher amongst women of 4 year olds than in the first year after birth.

    Low mood , social withdrawal and difficulty managing day to day tasks can be symptoms of depression. It is also common to have feelings of anxiety and worry that may be hard to control.

    It is never too late to seek help.  A good place to start is with your GP who can refer to a psychologist or a peri natal psychiatrist.  Making use of other supports such as a Maternal and Child Health Nurse and online resources including panda.org.au and beyondblue.org.au are very useful.

    Remember post natal depression and anxiety are very treatable conditions.

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