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Baby blues

2-minute read

Giving birth is an emotional and tiring experience and your hormones change dramatically in the first few days. It's around this time you may experience the 'baby blues'.

The baby blues can start anywhere between 3 to 10 days after the birth of your baby and usually last for 2 to 3 days.

Many women get the baby blues. You may feel teary, anxious and irritable and your mood can go up and down. Feeling teary can be worse if your labour was difficult, you are very tired or you have other worries, such as problems breastfeeding.

Usually the baby blues will pass and the most effective treatment is support from your partner, family and friends.

You can also call Pregnancy, Birth and Baby on 1800 882 436 to speak to a maternal child health nurse.

Baby blues that lasts for longer than 2 weeks may be a sign that you are developing postnatal depression. Postnatal depression can develop at anytime during the first year after having a baby.

It's important that you and your partner, along with your family and friends are aware of the signs of postnatal depression and seek help if you feel you are concerned.

Where can I go for advice and support?

Speak to a maternal child health nurse

Call Pregnancy, Birth and Baby to speak to a maternal child health nurse on 1800 882 436 or video call. Available 7am to midnight (AET), 7 days a week.

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: October 2019

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Need more information?

Postnatal depression

Many women experience the 'baby blues' after pregnancy, but when feelings persist beyond these early days, it may be a sign of depression.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Antenatal & postnatal depression: women | Raising Children Network

Antenatal depression and postnatal depression are more than pregnancy ups and downs or baby blues. If you have symptoms, it’s a good idea to seek help.

Read more on website

Risk factors for Perinatal Anxiety - Gidget Foundation

Risk Factors Perinatal depression and anxiety can strike anyone: first-time parents, experienced parents, older parents, younger parents, and parents from all socioeconomic backgrounds and cultures

Read more on Gidget Foundation Australia website

The Pink Elephants Support Network - Post Partum Wellbeing Following Pregnancy After Loss

Women who have experienced miscarriage can be more at risk of postpartum depression or anxiety

Read more on Pink Elephants Support Network website

Anxiety and Depression during pregnancy and the postnatal period

Read more on Black Dog Institute website

Risk factors for perinatal depression - Partners to Parents

Find out what risk factors increase the likelihood that you will experience depression and anxiety during pregnancy or following childbirth.

Read more on Partners to Parents website

Stress, Anxiety & Postnatal Depression | Tresillian

Tips on how to deal with signs of stress and anger and where to go for help if you think you have postnatal depression.

Read more on Tresillian website

Anxiety & Depression in Pregnancy & Early Parenthood

If you are reading this, you may have concerns about your thoughts, feelings or behaviours, or those of your partner or someone close to you who is pregnant or recently had a baby.

Read more on Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Australia (PANDA) website

Postnatal depression - COPE

COPE's purpose is to prevent and improve the quality of life of those living with emotional and mental health problems that occur prior to and within the perinatal period.

Read more on COPE - Centre of Perinatal Excellence website

Perinatal depression

Becoming a parent brings a wide range of emotions, ranging from joy and excitement to stress and apprehension. But depression is more than just a low mood – it’s a serious condition that affects your physical and mental health.

Read more on Beyond Blue website

Call us and speak to a Maternal Child Health Nurse for personal advice and guidance.

Need further advice or guidance from our maternal child health nurses?

This information is for your general information and use only and is not intended to be used as medical advice and should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any medical condition, nor should it be used for therapeutic purposes.

The information is not a substitute for independent professional advice and should not be used as an alternative to professional health care. If you have a particular medical problem, please consult a healthcare professional.

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