The causes of postpartum depression (PPD) are complex, and are not yet fully understood by doctors. However, it's a real medical condition, and women should remember that PPD is never their fault, and it's highly treatable with the right intervention.
Some research suggests that PPD is caused by a combination of both genetic and environmental factors, including past trauma, life stress, hormones, and the physical and mental demands of caring for a newborn baby.
Women may be at a greater risk for PPD if they've been diagnosed with a mental health condition like anxiety, depression, or bipolar disorder in the past, or if they have a family history of these conditions. In addition, if you've experienced postpartum depression during previous pregnancies, there's a greater chance of developing it again.
In some cases, though, it's unclear why a woman develops PPD, which can make it even more confusing and difficult. However, it's important to remember that recovery is possible.
Take our online depression quiz to determine whether you are experiencing symptoms of depression. It's free, quick, confidential, and clinically validated.