Supportive, Life-Affirming Therapy for Parents Struggling with Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder (PMAD)

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Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder, or PMAD, describes the variety of emotional issues parents may experience during pregnancy and after childbirth. Sometimes called Postpartum Depression, therapists now know that this condition is much broader than previously thought. In fact, PMAD can range from symptoms of depression and anxiety to psychosis. 

 

Becoming a parent is always stressful, but you shouldn’t have to suffer. If your feelings go beyond the “Baby Blues,” it may be time to get some well-deserved relief. 

 

At Sage Tree Therapy, we want you to know it’s okay to not feel okay. We believe you. And we can help. 

What new parents should know about PMAD?

Wondering if your highs and lows are normal? You’re not alone. 

Most new parents experience a range of emotions after giving birth. So, along with the exhaustion you’re undoubtedly feeling, it’s completely normal to experience sadness or irritability after you have a baby. These feelings usually go away within a few weeks. 

 

However, if your difficult feelings linger, disrupt your life or affect your relationships with people you love, they may represent something more serious. 

These issues don’t have to last forever. You can overcome this. We offer a judgment-free space where you can be real about your struggles and be met with the support you deserve. 

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Are You Experiencing Any of These Symptoms?

Loss of interest in activities you used to enjoy

A low mood, sadness, hopelessness or frequent crying spells

Lack of energy that feels different than normal tiredness

Persistent, intrusive or disturbing thoughts regarding your new baby

Hypervigilance in protecting your baby

Physical symptoms like dizziness, nausea or heart palpitations

Agitation, constant worry or the feeling that something bad is going to happen

Difficulty with concentration or racing thoughts that just won’t stop

Disturbances in your appetite or sleep that can’t be explained by your baby’s needs

Feelings of guilt or shame

The compulsion to clean, check or reorder things over and over again

Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder (PMAD) takes several forms including anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder and PTSD. 

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Are you at risk for PMAD?

Symptoms of PMAD can affect new parents from any background, race, religion, income level,  family style or disposition. It doesn’t matter if you’re a first-time parent or not, if you breast-feed or don’t, or if your child was born healthy or with medical challenges. Hormonal changes often trigger symptoms that make it hard to get back to normal. And if you’ve had a difficult pregnancy or are simply adjusting to the challenges of being a parent, PMAD symptoms can make your life feel unmanageable. 

 

You may be at greater risk of developing PMAD if: 

  • You experienced a high-risk pregnancy. 

  • Your child was treated in the NICU or required medical interventions.

  • You have a personal or family history of depression or anxiety.

  • You have a history of alcohol or drug abuse. 

  • You have experienced trauma or are currently going through a period of high stress.

  • You are a single parent, have a lack of social support or have limited access to resources. 

 

Even if you are at higher risk of developing PMAD, there is hope. This condition is highly treatable. Our therapists can help. 

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If PMAD symptoms are disrupting your life, it’s important to seek treatment.

Symptoms of PMAD are not “all in your head.” We know you’re not imagining them – they’re real. 

And they won’t go away on their own. 

When PMAD is left untreated, it can negatively impact your life – and your child’s life – for years to come. Research shows that parents who are depressed or anxious are less likely to engage with their children during those crucial first years of life. As a result, babies may face developmental or emotional challenges as they grow. Not only that, but untreated PMAD also adds stress to your partner and other loved ones. It’s a condition that truly affects entire families. 

There’s no reason symptoms of PMAD should hold you back. Not when help is available and a brighter future is possible.
 

Explore Treatment Options at Sage Tree Therapy

At Sage Tree Therapy, we help you feel like yourself again and be the parent you always wanted to be. And we do it in an environment that is always authentic and never judgy. Because we get it.

Our treatment options include cognitive-behavioral therapy sessions and more: 

  • In-Home Therapy - We can visit moms directly in their homes for the duration of their pregnancy, if on medically-advised bed rest, or up to 12-weeks after delivery.

  • Teletherapy - We can chat with moms via phone call or video conference throughout pregnancy or postpartum. You don’t have to be pregnant or recently delivered to get the care you need! We also serve women with fertility issues and parents of children at any age. 

  • Support Groups - Members of this small, intimate group of no more than 8 people meet at a Sage Tree Therapy location or remotely. A free 20-minute screening is required before joining for new clients.

  • Visual Expressive Art Sessions - Clients who have experienced trauma, anxiety, or depression can benefit from expressing themselves creatively with meaningful art (painting, collaging, or journaling) and learning more about themselves in the process.

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Why Reach Out to Sage Tree Therapy?

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Our therapists are committed to helping parents, just like you, feel like themselves again. We give you a judgment-free space to process all the feelings that make PMAD so overwhelming and provide you with the tools you need to thrive. 

 

Here’s what you can expect from the therapists at Sage Tree Therapy:

All of our potential clients see an intake therapist for a full assessment appointment before choosing a therapist and receiving therapy. 
We don’t offer platitudes or invalidating phrases. Just honest, transparent support. 
All of our therapists have a background in trauma and view mental health through a trauma-informed lens, which takes into account your past experiences and how they impact your life today. 
We give you plans, processes, and tools that will help you feel like you again.
We don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all approach. We help you discover the right treatment for you. 
We’re excited to serve our clients each day, even when it’s hard. Therapy is like running a marathon once per week, and we have a strong appreciation for the challenge.

If PMAD symptoms are impacting your parenting ability or your quality of life, it’s time to get the help you deserve.