11-23 Parental Depression- Part 2: Tips for effective parenting while fighting depression

Posted in Depression, Depression Treatment, Family, Mental Health, Parenting, Therapy

Parental Depression- Part 2: Tips for effective parenting while fighting depression

Parenting is a challenging job that needs a complete balance between the needs of the parents and those of the child. But when it comes to parents coping with a mental disorder, the situation gets tougher and the same issues are amplified. There is no embarrassment in having a mental illness. But, since our society, typically, considers mental illness a taboo, it becomes quite difficult to deal with crippling thoughts associated with mental disorder such as depression.

Postnatal depression or depression after childbirth is a common phenomenon. As per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately one in 8 women experiences postpartum depression. A depressed parent finds it difficult to differentiate between baby blues or full-blown postpartum depression or psychosis and is unable to cope with irregular sleep patterns, poor diet, lack of concentration and mood changes, which directly affects a child’s growth.

Parental depression may impact relationship with child

Studies have shown that parents with depression tend to be less active in interacting with their children, which, in turn, affects a child’s growth and development, social interaction and emotional enhancement. However, there are some cases when parents dealing with a mental illness can turn out to be doting parents since they give extra attention to their children’s needs.

Even celebrities struggle with feelings of inadequacy associated with childbirth. Adele Laurie Blue Adkins MBE, an American singer, recently opened up about her postpartum depression and the overcoming tales. Like many new mothers, Adele too faced depression after her pregnancy but she chose  to connect with mothers who were going through the same phase instead of depending on antidepressants.

Single parenting and depression is a troubling combination. Being a single parent is challenging. It has been shown that even children can get caught in the web of depressive thoughts harbored by single parents.  Here are some tips to carry out effective parenting while fighting depression:

1. Staying positive, physically and mentally: It is very important for parents to stay fit. But it can be quite challenging for a depressed mother to follow a definite schedule for her health after washing her kid’s clothes, making them bed, cleaning the house and helping them with homework. It is important to take care of oneself and seek help from a family doctor or a mental health professional.

2. Balancing time: Balancing their children’s activities and work pressure is, indeed, a tough job for parents with mental disorders. Often in the process of competing with the world, depressed parents fail to attend the interests of their child.

3. Connecting with people: Depression can wreck a person both physically and mentally so it is important to surround oneself with supporting individuals. Connecting with people and talking to one’s family can help relieve some of the symptoms and prevent isolation.

4. Educating oneself: Educating oneself about the difference between baby blues and postpartum effects can help fight devastating symptoms and lead a happy life. Talking to a professional or someone who can offer a helping hand can also prove to be beneficial.

Leading a depression-free life

Talk therapy helps a patient to recover from depression by incorporating partnership, support, relationship, collaboration, communication, understanding, action, and participation. Therapy has been effective in treating depression by changing the perception, thoughts, beliefs and moods of a patient toward a more positive direction.

If you or your loved one is suffering from depression, it is important to seek immediate medical help. The Depression Treatment Centers of California can help you in finding the best treatments for depression. You may call our 24/7 helpline number (855) 678-0400 or chat online for assistance in searching the best rehab centers in California.

Read the other articles of the series, “Parental Depression”:

Part 1: Maternal depression and its effect on child development


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