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"Healthy Beginnings Program"


Are you pregnant...
A mother of young children...
Feeling depressed...

Feeling overwhelmed... Tired even after resting... Loss of interest in life... Crying for no apparent reason... Difficulty sleeping... Feeling helpless... Feeling like you’re not a good enough mother... Frightening or intrusive thoughts... Worried about the baby or not being a good mother... Anxiety or panic attacks - This program may be for you.

Postpartum Depression (PPD) is characterized by tearfulness, despondency, feelings of inadequacy, and difficulty coping for 2 weeks or more following birth. Women often report frequent unwarranted concerns about the baby, intrusive thoughts about death and loss, and excessive guilt about their adequacy as a mother. Twenty five percent of women are at risk for developing PPD.

“Baby Blues”, which is common to 80 % of new mothers, is less intense and severe, usually lasting less than 2 weeks following birth. Certain risk factors can complicate Baby Blues leading to PPD. These risk factors are lack of family support, relationship conflict, and financial stress.

Postpartum Psychosis is the more severe form of depression following birth, characterized by intrusive or harmful thoughts, loss of contact with reality, hallucination, or disorientation. Occurs in 1-2 deliveries per 1000.


Available Support Services
Program Goals

Individual Counseling:
Provides assessment, treatment and supportive therapy.

Bi–weekly Support Groups:
Groups provide a safe place to receive valuable information and emotional support from other women experiencing Postpartum Mood Disorders.

Couple/Marital Counseling:
Facilitates improved understanding of PPD, helps to reduce conflict, and to improve communication.

  • To promote mother-infant attachment.
  • To reduce stigma and increase knowledge.
  • To reduce isolation and distress.
  • To learn coping skills that reduce guilt, and feelings of inadequacy.
  • To promote realistic expectations of motherhood and women’s roles.
  • To help women establish support systems and to strengthen relationships with their partners.
  • To offer non-judgmental encouragement and support.
  • To connect women with others faced with similar experiences.
  • To normalize feelings and experiences.

The Program is offered free of charge to women and families with children under the age of three.

 

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