Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The MOTHERS Act



Did you know that postpartum depression affects up to 20% of new mothers?

Did you know that more than 1 in 7 women are depressed in the nine months before pregnancy, during their pregnancy, or in the nine months after giving birth? (according to a new study from Kaiser Permanente)

Did you know that a new study suggests a majority of doctors are not probing new mothers for signs of postpartum depression? Of the 228 physicians responding to the survey who said they had seen women for postpartum visits in the previous three months, 79% said they were unlikely to formally screen the patients for depression (from WRAL.com in North Carolina).

Wow.

I did not know all this until I read Postpartum Progress and Postpartum Support International.

But I did live with this. And felt like I was the only one. Like something was wrong with me. I cried. A lot. I yelled. A lot. And then cried some more. I just felt so..........so overwhelmed.

There is a bill that is currently with the Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP) Committee of the Senate. Called the MOTHERS Act. It stands for The Moms Opportunity to Access Help, Education, Research and Support for Postpartum Depression.

If the majority of the HELP Committee members endorse the MOTHERS Act, the bill will move forward for consideration by the Senate. Without Senate sponsors, the bill could languish in committee and await reintroduction at a future date. The moms of America can't wait for that!

Why? Because passage of this bill will ensure that new mothers and their families are educated about postpartum depression, screened for symptoms and provided with essential services. In addition, it will increase research into the causes, diagnoses and treatments for postpartum depression.

So what can you do?

Well, lemme tell ya.

Click here, find your state Senators and give them a jingle! Today.

Err....how about right now?

"Postpartum mood disorders are a disease of motherhood -- they can affect any woman who becomes a mother, regardless of who she is. If we don't do something to better educate and treat the mothers who may suffer, we are doing a disservice to all mothers, children and families everywhere. All it takes is a phone call to let the Senate know that the women of America want the MOTHERS Act to pass."--Katherine Stone at Postpartum Progress

10 comments:

painted maypole said...

thanks for this. i know a lot about POSTpartum depression, but this is the first I've heard of depression during pregnancy, which I think I struggled with, not having a name for it...

Modified Mummy said...

I had severe post natal depression with my first son. Everything was so hard and my thoughts were constantly thick and thinking clearly wasn't an option. Ihad had depression previously in my life, so I vaguely knew what was wrong with me, but it was my wonderful partner who managed to tell the health visitor about it, and to get her out to talk to me.

Plus a local charity were such a big help. they provided a volunteer to help me 2 hours a week, and she would either just sit and talk with me, or take my son out for a couple of hours, to give me a break. They were a godsend.

I haven't developed any kind of depression this time around, and it's amazing how much clearer and happier everything seems. And due to having PND last time, they've been merticulous at making sure Iwas okay and coping well.

Although I'm in the UK, so this mothers act isn't applicable to me, it sounds like a grand plan.

Cherann said...

Those are some interesting facts. I wonder what the severity is of the depression. I think I suffered from "post partum" after I stopped nursing (I put it in quotes because I'm not sure if that is what it would be called). Hormone production (or lack there of) can wreak so much havoc on a woman!

Candace said...

you rock! you rock! and you rock! for posting this. thank you. part of the reason I started blogging was because of PPD. I remember googling for hours trying to find someone like me out there. I had PPD twice and depression while pregnant with my second.
thank you. thank you. thank you!!
I will check all the links out.
The urge is to run like hell and forget once we feel better but we have to be sisters in this and continue to talk about what we went/go through!!

Amanda said...

You rock! I've posted on this and have been harassing, I mean contacting, my senators.

Deb said...

I spent about five seconds talking about "Mommy Blues" on the Today Show a few weeks ago, and the reality is that I suffered the "Mommy Blacks", as I call them. I've covered the topic on my blog, and I'd LOVE to cut and paste your entry on the legislation AND link to you if you don't mind. You put the entire things so eloquently, my dear, that I couldn't do it any better. Would you mind?

cate said...

wow...as someone who is currently struggling with PPD, i wish i could be part of this...alas, i am in Canada.

i really hope this bill goes through. i'm fortunate that our prenatal classes really focused on the signs of PPD, both for the mothers and their husbands. without that knowledge, my hubby and i wouldn't have known for me to get help.

good luck with this!

Chaotic Joy said...

I am late to this party and I wish I had known about it. I have a lot to say on this topic nad would have loved to take part. In fact, I think I will next week. Better late that not at all. :) Thanks so much for doing this.

Alex Elliot said...

What an important post! Thanks for writing it.

MGH Center for Women's Mental Health said...

Thanks for your support of the MOTHERS Act. Too often postpartum depression is a problem that goes unnoticed, and most women with PPD never receive any type of treatment. PPD is a treatable illness, and it is essential that we continue to educate ourselves and others about this important issue.

For more information on PPD, visit us at The MGH Center for Women's Mental Health

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