Giving birth to your first, second, or third baby comes with a mix of powerful emotions each time. If your joy and excitement subside postpartum and you begin to feel anxiety, mood swings, cry with little control, or have difficulty sleeping, you may be experiencing postpartum depression. These feelings can begin during pregnancy and continue long after you’ve given birth.

Postpartum depression is the most common health complication for women who have just had a baby. It’s serious and may affect your baby’s feeding and development or your bonding and parenting. Talk to your pregnancy care provider about how you’re feeling and ask what you may do or take to help. The Food and Drug Administration approved the use of the first oral medication for postpartum depression, Zurzuvae (zuranolone).

Side effects of Zurzuvae include drowsiness,  diarrhea, fatigue, and urinary tract infections. However, when taken as directed by your pregnancy care provider, the results are promising after just three days. Healthcare providers call the new medication  “a game-changer” because of the lack of qualified maternal mental health care providers. Talk with your care provider or baby’s pediatrician to find out if they have any concerns about your use of Zurzuvae while you nurse your little one. If you’re considering seeking help for postpartum depression, ask your care provider about Zurzuvae and if it could help in your circumstance and as part of your overall care during postpartum recovery.

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The Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) promotes the health of women and newborns.

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