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Postpartum Depression (cont.)

Postpartum Depression Medications

Vitamins: While postpartum depression in the United States is rarely related to nutritional problems, it is probably a good idea to continue to take prenatal vitamins and iron after delivery.

Antidepressants: Drugs such as fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), paroxetine (Paxil), citalopram (Celexa), escitalopram (Lexapro), or venlafaxine (Effexor) may be needed for as long as a year (possibly longer). Other medications that might be used include lithium or valproic acid (Depakote).

Hormone therapy: Estrogen, often in combination with an antidepressant, sometimes helps with postpartum depression. Some women also need thyroid hormone treatment.

Other still unproven therapies include the use of bright light and nutritional therapy (especially increasing omega-3 free fatty acids). What some refer to as natural remedies, these therapies have not shown that they are effective substitutes for more conventional interventions.

If you are breastfeeding, medicine you take can be passed to your baby. Some antidepressants can be used safely with little risk to your baby and are therefore viable treatments while breastfeeding.

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Postpartum Depression - Symptoms

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Postpartum Depression »

During the postpartum period, up to 85% of women experience some type of mood disturbance.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


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