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If you regularly watch the EastEnders, then you will be familiar with the Stacey, who is played by actress Lacey Turner. According to the storyline in 2016 Stacey had been suffering from postpartum psychosis since she gave birth.

But what exactly is postpartum psychosis? To start with, it has nothing to do with postnatal depression. Postpartum psychosis or puerperal psychosis affects 1,400 women a year. It is a group of mental illnesses that have psychotic symptoms that are experienced after childbirth. A woman suffering from the condition offer has extreme mood swings, hallucinations, and depression.

Women with postpartum psychosis will experience the symptoms as soon as giving birth, or within the first two weeks. There are some cases in which women develop the symptoms much later, such as when their period restarts or when they stop breastfeeding.

Postpartum psychosis is considered as a serious mental illness. Women suffering from it should be treated as soon as possible. When it is not treated right away, the condition can get worse fast. It should be treated to prevent harm from happening to the mother and her baby.

In most cases, the woman suffering from the condition doesn’t realise she is ill. It will be up to her spouse and family to spot the signs and take action right away. With the right treatment program, women have fully recovered from postpartum psychosis.

The condition is likely to affect mothers who have had postpartum psychosis before. Women suffering from other mental health conditions such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder are also more likely to have postpartum psychosis.

Postpartum psychosis is treated as a psychiatric emergency. The mother suffering from it may need to be admitted to a hospital for treatment. It is recommended to admit the patient with her child to any of the specialist mother and baby units. This allows the patient to bond with her baby, which gives her the confidence of being a mother.

The good news for postpartum psychosis patients in the UK is that the government has promised to provide funding to improve the mental health care for expectant and new mothers. A government pledge of £300 million will be used for support services that include specialist mother and baby units, and psychiatric hospitalization.

Postpartum psychosis can have a huge impact on the family. It can be distressing and stressful for husbands, who are left at home while his wife and their baby are in the hospital. Fathers who are struggling due to the condition of their wives should talk to the mental health professional involved in their partners’ care. That way they know the progress of the treatment and learn more about the condition.

These are the things you need to know about postpartum psychosis. If you think you are suffering from it, consult with your GP or a health professional right away.

Help and advice can be found on the following links or Google for services provided in your locality or country:

Author: Alhambra Women’s Network guest writer

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