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What are common postpartum depression symptoms?

Postpartum depression (PPD) is a mood disorder that affects some new moms after childbirth. It is important to be aware of the symptoms of PPD, as it can significantly impact a mother’s well-being.

Here are some common symptoms of postpartum depression:

  • Persistent sadness or feelings of emptiness. Feeling down, hopeless, or having a general sense of sadness that lasts for an extended period, often with no apparent cause. 
  • Loss of interest or pleasure. Losing interest in activities that were once enjoyable, including activities related to self-care, hobbies, or spending time with loved ones. 
  • Changes in appetite. Experiencing a significant change in appetite, such as overeating or having a reduced appetite, which may result in weight gain or weight loss. 
  • Sleep disturbances. Having trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or experiencing excessive sleepiness even when the opportunity to rest is available. 
  • Fatigue or loss of energy. Feeling persistently tired, lacking energy, and having difficulty carrying out daily tasks. Feelings of worthlessness or guilt: Experiencing intense feelings of worthlessness, guilt, or self-blame, often without reasonable cause. 
  • Difficulty concentrating or making decisions. Having trouble focusing, making decisions, or experiencing a decline in memory and concentration. 
  • Anxiety or restlessness. Feeling excessively worried, anxious, or restless, which may manifest as physical symptoms like a racing heart or difficulty sitting still. 
  • Irritability or mood swings. Having frequent mood swings, feeling easily irritated, agitated, or having a short temper. 
  • Thoughts of self-harm or harming the baby. In severe cases, having persistent thoughts of self-harm or harmful thoughts towards the baby. It’s important to seek immediate medical attention if these thoughts occur. 

Experiencing some degree of mood swings, fatigue, and sadness is common during the postpartum period. However, if these symptoms persist for more than two weeks and interfere with daily functioning and bonding with your baby, it’s important to seek help from a healthcare professional. Postpartum depression is treatable, and early intervention can make a significant difference in recovery.

For Immediate Support

If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs help now and you’re in the USA, you can go to Crisis Text Line’s website at To text with a counselor, and/or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 988 or 1-800-273 -TALK (8255) or go to their website:

PowerMom Connect

The PowerMom platform invites pregnant people to collect and contribute important pregnancy-related health information through app-based surveys and wearable sensors. PowerMom Connect is a new, paid sub-study within the PowerMom platform. It is focused on supporting mothers during the postpartum period.

If you have any questions, the PowerMom team is here to help. You can reach us at

Lauren Serpico

Lauren Serpico, Ph.D, is the Sr. Project Manager of Social Media Content at Scripps Research Digital Trials Center. Her background is in Community Psychology, with a focus on online social networks.