It can be tough to acknowledge depression during what is supposed to be a joyous time. But as many as 1 in 5 women have symptoms of depression during pregnancy. You’re at higher risk if you have a history of depression.

Hormonal changes or stress can worsen existing depression. Pregnancy symptoms such as morning sickness, fatigue, and mood swings can also contribute. It’s important to your growing baby that you take care of yourself, eat well, sleep well, and get regular prenatal care. You may worry that antidepressants may harm your unborn baby. While there are risks associated with antidepressant use in pregnancy, not treating depression may be more risky than taking medicine. Work with your doctor to find the best solution for you.

Your ob-gyn or primary doctor may screen you for depression at a routine office visit. He can ask you a series of questions to determine your risk for depression and can offer treatment if necessary.

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