Is it possible to prepare for postpartum depression? Absolutely!
While not every new mom experiences PPD, mothers (and their babies) are best off when they consider whether they have a predisposition for it.
Here are some of the risk factors:
If you check any of these risk factor boxes, let your doctor know while you're still pregnant so everyone is on the same page. You can also connect with a therapist during pregnancy to set up a plan for after birth. Planning ahead allows time to research the effect of certain medications on breastfeeding, set up steps to seek help, and lessen some of the chaos that can ensue when PPD hasn't been discussed and becomes an emergency.
And if you are a mom and if you had PPD/A prior, it can be terrifying to think about having another baby and having to go through PPD/A again.
So what can moms do to reduce these risks? Below are some recommendations:
Taking steps may help to prevent a Perinatal Mood Disorder from occurring the second time around. And if you do struggle again, changes are that you will get help and recover much more quickly with preparation and planning.
A good resource is a book written specifically on this topic, called: “What Am I Thinking?: Having A Baby After Postpartum Depression” by Karen Kleiman.