• 7 months ago

    Postpartum depression/anxiety picking

    Several months ago I was diagnosed with PPD. I'm taking several medications that help. My psychiatrist wants to adjust them because they aren't as effective as we'd like, but since I'm breastfeeding my options are limited. I'm reaching out because one of my biggest issues is I have developed an even worse picking problem with my finger/toenails. It's so bad that I've almost ripped off several toenails and it is painful to walk. Looking for options/ideas to help this. Breastfeeding is extremely important to me and I feel would be a setback if I had to stop. Any therapeutic suggestions appreciated.

Responses

  • RE: Postpartum depression/anxiety picking

    Skin picking is a problem that falls under the category of obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders, and can go by the unkind name of self-mutilation. But while worries are on one end of the continuum – obsessions – skin picking is on the other extreme end, as a compulsive behavior, often not associated with obsessions. Many specialists who treat OCD also have the skill set needed to treat skin picking. But it is a special skill set, so make sure your therapist is versed in it. You can go to the website of the International Obsessive-Compulsive Foundation to find specialists in your area.
  • RE: Postpartum depression/anxiety picking

    I’m so sorry to hear that this is happening to you. Taking care of yourself and working with your doctor is extremely important to improving the symptoms of anxiety [which could be a manifestation of PPD].

    During breastfeeding, a very special bond is created between you and your baby. I completely understand how important this is to both of you.

    From a treatment perspective, it’s recommended that breastfeeding women ensure that they have a balanced diet. Lactation can drain nutrients from breastfeeding moms. And all kinds of vitamins are taken from you to help your baby grow. Because of this, your dietary requirements increase while you breastfeed.

    We without a doubt know that nutritional deficiencies, even mild ones, can have an impact on well-being.

    Have you considered talking to your doctor about vitamins, minerals or supplements? Some have been shown to help improve symptoms of PPD.

    Simple remedies like German chamomile tea, magnesium which aids serotonin, and Omega 3 fatty acids all help with mood and improve sleep. None of these will negatively affect your baby while you continue to breastfeed. There’s also an ancient Ayurvedic medicine/herb called shatavari, also known as wild asparagus root, used for centuries to help normalize hormones after pregnancy and reduce postpartum depression.

    Consider talking with your doctor, you may also want to take a look at the NIH National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health[NCCIH ] site for more information.

    Best of luck, I hope this was helpful information
    Dr Bruni