Futterman, Sirotkin And Seinfeld, LLP
Futterman, Sirotkin And Seinfeld, LLP

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PTSD in new mothers

On Behalf of | Feb 16, 2017 | Birth Injuries |

When discussing birth injuries, many in Queens may think that such incidents only refer to issues involving newborns. However, birthing mothers can also be subject to such injuries. It may be easy to quantify the physical effect an injury can have on a woman, yet what about the emotional toll? Post-traumatic stress disorder is becoming an ever-increasing diagnosis amongst mothers. In many cases, the women experiencing it may not be suffering physical injuries at all, but rather are being impacted from seeing their babies harmed.

The online healthcare publication WebMD.com defines PTSD as a condition that can develop following a person witnessing a terrifying or traumatic event. It goes on further to say that such events typically involve serious physical harm (or at least the threat of it). Given the months of anticipation that proceed the birth of the baby, the impact of seeing that child harmed or die during delivery most certainly compounds the trauma.

Symptoms of PTSD can include:

  • Intense feelings of fear and anxiety
  • Extensive periods of depression
  • Irritability and sudden outbursts of anger
  • Physical issues such as high blood pressure or a rapid heart rate

Another symptom witnessed in PTSD victim is withdrawal. In new mothers, this can leave them with little energy or ability to care for their new babies. This can be extremely problematic in cases where a baby’s birth injuries leave him or her requiring extensive care.

Reports vary in how many mothers actually experience PTSD following childbirth. Information shared The Atlantic cites sources estimating the incidence rate to be as low as in 1-3 percent of cases, while others put it as high as 17-25 percent. In any event, those mothers who do experience PTSD will most likely need additional treatment to deal with it.