Maternal Mental Health
Early Screening, treatment and support for mothers affected by maternal depression strengthen families and promote healthy development of young children. First 5 Fresno County investments aim to reduce stigma and improve maternal mental health.
Maternal depression is the most common complication of childbearing; yet it remains a stigmatized subject resulting in lack of diagnosis and barrier for accessing treatment.
First 5 Fresno County and other community partner organizations are working together to increase awareness and decrease barriers to care for mothers impacted by maternal depression.
The Perinatal Mental Health Integration Project provides training and support to community partners about postpartum depression and offers screening and consultation services to pregnant and postpartum women.
Signs and Symptoms of Maternal Depression
|Frequent uncontrollable crying||Less eye contact|
|Decrease or increase in appetite||Become withdrawn, irritable or inconsolable|
|Lack of interest in the baby||Fewer vocalizations|
|Unable to care for the baby/family||Expresses little/no enjoyment in interaction|
|Limited positive interaction with the baby||Difficulty in relating to others and trusting adults|
|Sleep difficulties||Delayed language development|
|Feeling hopeless||Lower activity level|
|Feeling unable to cope||Limited exploration of the environment|
|Fear of harming child or self||Display of sober, sad or flat affect|
|Moderate to high anxiety||Displays insecure attachment and behavioral problems|
|Not enjoying life as much as in the past|
Proven Ways to Help
|Early recognition||Having a consistent, emotionally available and responsive caregiver||Information and support for husband and/or significant other|
|Peer support||Developmental stimulation||Family oriented therapeutic intervention|
|Appropriate treatment||Exposure to positive emotion|
|Respite care||Safe environment|