Common Problems Associated with Postpartum Hormone Imbalance
A woman’s body starts to change after conception, all thanks to the hormone shifts. From weight gain to being over-emotional, easily irritable, or even sensitive, you experience a rollercoaster of emotions combined with other physical changes. The good news is these changes are temporary and last for only a few weeks or months after your baby is born. However, it may not be the case for some women. This rise and fall of hormones may extend longer, affecting you physically and mentally. But what are some of the issues related to abnormal hormone regulation? Read on to find out.
Lack of Sex Drive
Your reproductive hormones are incredibly high during pregnancy and substantially decrease after giving birth. During postpartum, the estrogen levels go down, leading to a lack of sex drive resulting from vaginal dryness. Before giving birth, your body releases oxytocin — a hormone responsible for bonding and sexual stimulation, by cuddling with your partner. After giving birth, you get this oxytocin hormone from the baby while bonding, resulting in a shift in emotional energy and loss of sex drive. Your body also releases more prolactin hormones to allow your breast to prepare more milk, which contributes to decreased sex drive.
According to research, postpartum depression results from reduced levels of estrogen and progesterone hormones after giving birth. Lactogenic hormones stimulate breast milk production in postpartum, and thyroid hormones are responsible for our mood control. Your body increases the release of lactogenic hormones while sharply decreasing the thyroid hormone levels. This decrease in thyroid hormone levels makes you feel depressed, exhausted, and lack self-drive. Shifts in moods during postpartum exist in three forms:
Baby blues. These are sudden mood swings you experience immediately after giving birth. They are short-term and last only a few hours or a couple of weeks after childbirth. You may feel thrilled, anxious, overwhelmed, sad, or have trouble sleeping. These feelings often go away without needing to see a doctor.
Postpartum depression (PPD). With postpartum depression, you experience the same feeling as those of baby blues, but they are more intense. These mood swings usually occur a few days, weeks, or months after giving birth. Postpartum depression requires professional treatment from a healthcare provider because, in most cases, it affects normal functionality.
Postpartum psychosis. This is a postpartum mental illness that occurs within the first three months. Symptoms include
- Feeling disoriented
- Being obsessed with your child
- Suicide attempts or trying to hurt your child
Postpartum psychosis requires professional treatment to avoid self-harm or hurting others.
Vaginal dryness is the major contributor to pain and discomfort during intercourse after childbirth. This vaginal dryness results from low estrogen levels in the vulvar tissue during postpartum. A drop in estrogen levels may also result from breastfeeding, leading to tightening of pelvic muscles, tenderness, and vaginal dryness.
Worrying about your child after giving birth is normal, but it becomes a cause of alarm when it’s extreme. Postpartum anxiety is when your worry goes out of control and makes you have unfounded fears about the future. It also causes uncontrolled worries or the constant fear of something you are unsure of the cause.
Some of the symptoms of postpartum anxiety are:
- Increased stress and worry about your parenting skills.
- Extreme phobia of dying
- Racing thoughts
- Continuous feeling of agitation
- Shivering or excessive sweating
- Breathing heavily
- Having trouble breathing
- Chest pain
Reach Out to a Professional
Changes in hormones after giving birth are normal. However, talk to a healthcare provider to assess your situation when you have a severe postpartum hormonal imbalance. At Extraordinary Pain Relief, our doctors are professional and highly qualified in regulating postpartum hormonal imbalance. Get in touch with us today to learn more. Our doctors are always ready to assist you!