BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – Postpartum Depression affects one in seven new mothers, according to the World Health Organization. And many don't know where to turn for help.
What You Need To Know
- Brevard group offers support to mothers with postpartum depression
- It affects 1 in 7 new mothers, according to the World Health Organization
- Shandrea Jackson sought help after her second child was born
But one Brevard County-based group is teaming up to get moms through anxious times.
"I was feeling discomfort and illness and pain, it was not the ideal pregnancy," said Shandrea Jackson, who a year and a half ago had just given birth to her second child, Alexander.
Unlike when her first boy came into the world, this time it took her off guard.
"He would wake up in the middle of his sleep choking," she said.
Along with the pain, four weeks after being born Alexander developed bad acid reflux.
"Just trying to get it out of his throat, and I remember laying down after it was over and thinking I want to die," Jackson said. "I can't help him, I'm not doing what I need to be doing as a parent. And I'm useless."
Jackson knew she needed help.
The help came from the Postpartum Support Network, a group of licensed mental health counselors, doctors and moms who have gone through it—just like Jackson.
"A lot of moms don't even know what they are going through," said Antoinette Ferry, RN and Postpartum Support Network board member.
Symptoms can be having trouble bonding with the baby or depression and feeling alone. And like for Jackson, thoughts of hurting themselves.
"We have that wonderful support system that swoops in for the first month to try to help, families, cousins, relatives," said Dr. Christa Vermillera of ABC Counseling. "And right about a month everybody goes away, and you are expected to be able to survive on your own."
Ferry said there are also ways to treat the condition with medicine.
"The medication helps them see things for the way they are, and not this insurmountable mountain they can't accomplish," she said.
Jackson said thanks to the help she is herself again.
"I understand myself better, I'm stable, I've gotten everything I need," Jackson said.