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Experts highlight importance of maternal mental health

Havana, May 1 (Prensa Latina) Humanity celebrates the World Maternal Mental Health Day on Wednesday, which aims to raise awareness about the importance of preventing and treating mental disorders during pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum.

It is a day to raise awareness on the issue, so that more and more women seek specialized help and receive appropriate treatment.

According to experts, it is of vital importance to make visible and destigmatize the problems of anxiety and depression that are common among mothers, from pregnancy until the first year after child’s birth.

During pregnancy, women experience big physical, hormonal and emotional changes which, if they do not receive appropriate care timely, can have an impact on their physical and mental health.

Statistics show that every year one in five women worldwide experience some type of mood and anxiety disorders in the perinatal period.

Without timely medical and specialized care, it can lead to the following conditions: depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder and postpartum psychosis.

Among the most frequent causes and factors that affect maternal mental health are fatigue and tiredness, lack of sleep, hormonal changes, idealization of motherhood, past traumatic experiences, family conflicts, family or personal history of mental disorders, and loss of a child.

It is estimated that between 50 and 80 percent of women suffer from postpartum sadness, which is characterized by changes and alterations in mood and emotions, and feelings of sadness, anxiety and hopelessness, frequent crying spells, loss of appetite and sleep, and neglect of daily personal hygiene.

Taking care of maternal mental health is as important as physical care during pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum, benefiting the baby, the mother and the family, as well as the social and work environments.