INFORMATION FOR MOMS, FAMILY & FRIENDS
How do I know if I have a perinatal mood/anxiety disorder?
A validated tool for use in routine screening is the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). Translated into 23 languages and validated for use in both the antepartum and postpartum periods, the EPDS is a 10-item self-report scale. As the EPDS is not a diagnostic tool, it is important to follow-up with a healthcare provider if your EPDS score indicates that you are at-risk for perinatal depression.
Click here (o haz clic aquí). to take an online version of the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). Please be advised, however, that the EPDS is used to screen for perinatal depression ONLY. If you are suffering from of perinatal anxiety, perinatal OCD, etc., please see your healthcare provider for screening and diagnosis.
How can I get help in Georgia?
Warmline: Phone in to the free Project Healthy Moms Warmline at 1-800-933-9896 ext. 234 (#1 for Spanish) (toll-free), call the local number: 678-904-1966 (#1 for Spanish) or email PHMhelp@mhageorgia.org (English) or PHMayuda@mhageorgia.org (Spanish) to contact a survivor of a perinatal mood or anxiety disorder who can provide emotional support and suggest appropriate resources. Please leave a message when you call the Warmline, and our Warmline facilitator will respond as soon as possible.
Various treatment options exist for women suffering from perinatal mood disorders including:
Individual or group therapy
Antidepressant, antipsychotic, or other pharmacological treatment as prescribed by healthcare provider
Social support such as peer support groups
Although seeking professional help is vital, a woman can complement her treatment plan with self-care and other support strategies. Mothers should remember that taking care of oneself is NOT selfish. Rather, taking time to work on your physical, emotional, and mental health will benefit you, your baby, and your family as a whole. Listed below are several self-care strategies:
Eat nutritious food and avoid alcohol
Exercise, even if it is just a brisk walk down the street
Take time for yourself and engage in relaxing activities such as yoga and meditation
Spend time with family, friends, faith communities, support groups, or others who you can trust
Get plenty of sleep
Project Healthy Moms has compiled a list of healthcare providers in GA who have special training and/or experience with perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. We have also created a list of support groups, fitness facilities, and other organizations in Georgia that promote self-care among pregnant and/or postpartum women. To access this list, please click here.
How do I help a loved one who is struggling with a perinatal mood disorder?
Family and friends can play a vital role in recognizing perinatal mood disorders in a loved one, urging that loved one to seek help and supporting that loved one on her journey towards recovery.
For simple tips on how to support a loved one who is experiencing a perinatal mood/anxiety disorder, click here.
To access a more extensive list of resources for friends and family members supporting a loved one with a perinatal mood disorder, click here.
To read or hear testimonials from mothers and husbands who have helped their daughters or wives recover from perinatal mood disorders, click here.