Postpartum depression services for moms

HARRISON COUNTY, W.Va. (WDTV)-- Postpartum depression can start out as something simple like the "baby blues." Officials say several factors go into why a mom might have it.

Postpartum depression can start out as something simple like the "baby blues." Officials say several factors go into why a mom might have it.

"Hormones of pregnancy that need to level out and it also has to do with the responsibility of taking care of a new baby and sleep derivation," said lactation counselor and childbirth educator Lee Ann Romeo.

Romeo says if the "baby blues" lasts longer than 4 to 6 weeks, it's identified as postpartum depression.

Along with medication and counseling to help postpartum, one method Romeo says can help prevent it is breastfeeding.

"There's a lot of hormones involved with breast feeding," Romeo said. "We know that the release of oxytocin, which is a powerful hormone, helps prevent some of those feelings of depression."

United Hospital Center is one few hospitals in West Virginia as a "baby-friendly designation" offering programs dealing with post-birth and lactation support.

"Help for them when they're going home if they are having struggles they can come back in for free services and consultations," Romeo said.

Romeo says behavioral services is also available for new moms at UHC. She hopes moms feel okay to admit that its okay to find help.

"I think there's always been a stigma that nobody wanted to admit they felt depressed after they have a baby because this is supposed to be the happiest times of you life," Romeo said. "Don't be ashamed, don't be afraid to ask for help if you think somethings going on."