to main content

Our Experts

Working on a story? Need a medical expert to interview? Our media relations team can help you arrange an interview.

Media Contacts

Rachelle Khalaf

Director, Public Relations and Communications
Office: 713-442-4919
Cell: 713-805-8075
Survey Misconceptions Regarding Postpartum

Survey: Misconceptions Regarding Postpartum Depression Persist Despite Increased Exposure and Discussion

Houston (January 7, 2019) – In a country where women have access to some of the best pre- and post-natal care in the world, only about half realize that postpartum depression, a severe, long-lasting mood disorder some women experience after childbirth, affects 1 in 7 women, according to a recent survey.

A survey on postpartum depression was evenly distributed across the country to more than 200 women. Respondents anonymously answered questions regarding the effects of postpartum depression on women, their babies, and family. Kelsey-Seybold Clinic physicians reviewed the results and found that misconceptions regarding postpartum depression persist, despite increased exposure and discussion in recent years.  

Many new mothers will experience the "baby blues" after childbirth, which can begin within the first few days after delivery and last up to two weeks. Baby blues are characterized by feelings of sadness, anxiety, loneliness, fatigue, and sometimes uncontrollable crying. And while the "baby blues" is more common among new moms, 30 percent of survey respondents do not believe there is a difference between the "baby blues" and postpartum depression, even though the two conditions are distinct.

"Postpartum depression is a serious mood disorder, which may affect the mother's ability to care for herself and her newborn," said Deepali Patni, M.D., F.A.C.O.G., an OB/GYN at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic. "It's why we spend time during prenatal visits assessing a pregnant woman's risk for developing postpartum depression and the reason why new moms are assessed at the 2 and 6 week postpartum checkups to identify those who may be experiencing symptoms of postpartum depression."

Postpartum depression may include intense, long-lasting feelings of sadness, anxiety, and withdrawal; excessive irritability or anger; difficulty concentrating or focusing on tasks; and thoughts of hurting oneself or their baby.

"For many new mothers, a diagnosis of postpartum depression can come as a surprise. They're chalking up their feelings of sadness, anxiety, and helplessness to the exhaustion of being a new mom, and sometimes they feel they are failing at being a new mother. Almost half of all women who experience postpartum depression have never experienced a bout of depression, so they didn't know what to look for," said Jesus Samaniego, M.D., F.A.C.O.G., an OB/GYN at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic. "For all new moms out there, if you're experiencing symptoms of postpartum depression, see your doctor. There are treatment options, and complete recovery is achievable."

Nearly 80 percent of survey respondents agreed that feeling supported, during and after pregnancy, plays a role in the happiness new moms feel when welcoming a new baby into the family.

"We're all so used to doing everything independently. New moms and dads should tap into the wealth of knowledge and assistance that family members, friends, neighbors, lactation consultants, pediatricians, and their OB/GYN offer when a new baby arrives," said Megan Pallister, M.D., an OB/GYN at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic. "Doing so can genuinely help alleviate some of those new-parent stressors."

Women having thoughts of harming themselves or their baby should immediately put the baby in a safe place, such as in a crib, and call their doctor or their doctor's emergency line for instructions on what to do next. If unable to connect with your physician, call someone you trust and ask to be taken to a local hospital emergency room.

Other resources that may be of help to women experiencing postpartum depression include:

National crisis text line:

Text HOME to 741741 from anywhere in the USA, anytime, about any type of crisis.

National Suicide Prevention Hotline:


About Kelsey-Seybold

Kelsey-Seybold Clinic is Houston's premier multispecialty group practice, founded in 1949 by Dr. Mavis Kelsey in Houston's renowned Texas Medical Center. More than 850 physicians and allied health professionals practice at 40 locations in the Greater Houston area. Kelsey-Seybold offers quality medical care in 65+ medical specialties. The organization operates the largest freestanding Ambulatory Surgery Center in the state of Texas and offers state-of-the-art Varian TrueBeam and Varian Edge radiation therapy technology at a nationally accredited Cancer Center. An accredited Sleep Center, comprehensive laboratory services, advanced imaging and diagnostics, 24 onsite Kelsey pharmacies and one specialty pharmacy, and MyKelseyOnline, a secure web portal, are part of its comprehensive offerings. Kelsey-Seybold partners with major insurers to offer value-based commercial health plans. KelseyCare Advantage, a Medicare Advantage plan offered to Houston-area beneficiaries and affiliated with Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, has achieved the coveted 5-out-of-5-star rating from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid for eight consecutive years.

Kelsey-Seybold has been recognized by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as the nation’s first accredited Accountable Care Organization and is home to a nationally accredited Breast Diagnostic Center and Endoscopy Center.

Kelsey-Seybold Clinic achieved a Net Promoter Score (NPS) of 91. NPS is the global standard for measuring customer loyalty and satisfaction. An NPS score of 70 or higher is considered by industry experts to be "world class" and an indicator of overwhelming customer loyalty.

Go to the Archive

Connect With Our Team