Post-Partum Psychosis

Postpartum psychosis is a psychiatric condition which occasionally (and thankfully rarely) affects women who have recently given birth. This often manifests in the first two weeks after delivery. The symptoms include racing thoughts, confusion, delusions, hallucinations, depression, mood swings, irritability, difficulty in communicating, and anxiety. The risk factors include having a history of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other episodes of postpartum psychosis. However, around 50% of those who experience this condition have no risk factors. It has been recognized that this illness can be a mitigating factor in infanticide as well as suicide cases. The management of this psychiatric emergency includes administering antipsychotic drugs, electroconvulsive therapy, hospital admission, and family therapy.