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H H S Department of Health and Human Services
Health Resources and Services Administration
Maternal and Child Health

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Depression During & After Pregnancy: A Resource for Women, Their Families, & Friends

How Do I Know if I Have Perinatal Depression?

Only a trained health care or mental health professional can tell you whether you have Perinatal Depression. However, the following checklist can help you know whether you have some of the common symptoms.

During the past week or two —

  • I have been unable to laugh and see the funny side of things.
  • I have not looked forward to things I usually enjoy.
  • I have blamed myself unnecessarily when things went wrong.
  • I have been anxious or worried for no good reason.
  • I have felt scared or panicky for no good reason.
  • Things have been getting the best of me.
  • I have been so unhappy that I have had difficulty sleeping.
  • I have felt sad or miserable.
  • I have been so unhappy that I have been crying.
  • The thought of harming myself, my baby, or others has occurred to me.

Did you answer yes to more than one statement?

If so, we encourage you to visit with a trained health care or mental health care professional who can help determine if you are suffering from Perinatal Depression and advise a course of action.

Checklist adapted from the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale. Cox, J.L., Holden, J.M. & Sagovsky, R. (1987). “Detection of Postnatal Depression: Development of the 10-item Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale.” British Journal of Psychiatry, 150,782-876.

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Am I a Good Mother?

I was worried about what would happen if people thought I couldn’t be a good mother. But when I got help, I realized that I was still the one in control.