The World Health Organisation reports that 40% of South African mothers experience symptoms of postnatal depression.
According to research women are at high risk of developing depression three months after birth.
Maternity experts are raising awareness of the illness and what can be done to treat it.
Dr Howard Manyonga, Head of The Birthing Team, explains the work they are doing to assist patients, as well as the implications of leaving postnatal depression untreated.
We do have a high burden of depression and if we do not treat the patient adequately, there is an impact on how they bond with the baby and the cognitive development of the baby can be affected and in a sense, the effects are carried on to the next generation.— Dr Howard Manyonga, Head of The Birthing Team
There is a variety of approaches to treating depression starting firstly with support, this may be support from a healthcare professional - midwife, social worker or psychologist. If the person does not respond to that kind of behavioral psychotherapy intervention, then there is the option of escalating the treatment to medicine. There are a wide rang that are safe to use during breastfeeding...— Dr Howard Manyonga, Head of The Birthing Team
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