A Different, Better Way to Deal with Postpartum Anxiety/Depression

It’s been a really long time since I last wrote! I have been on QUITE a journey; wading through the confusing waters of postpartum mood issues. My goal is to help you, if you have fallen victim to this seemingly hopeless pit of despair. I just got back from NYC, where I went to one of the top functional medicine doctors in the world, Kelly Brogan, MD.

She assured me that inflammation can cause obsessive thoughts, and terrible anxiety, and best of all, that psychiatric diagnoses are a crock. That’s right, a crock. However, that does not negate the fact that we can feel like absolute crap, and hardly even feel like ourselves after pregnancy…for months! So, how do we get better? I highly suggest visiting kellybroganmd.com (sorry, my link wouldn’t work). Also, be sure to sign up for her free newsletter.

Dr. Brogan is pretty much a genius (hence the degree from MIT, Cornell, and on and on), so don’t bother commenting if you’re caught up in today’s “psycho-babble”, that is known as pop psychology. She’s too smart for that. One of my first and foremost suggestions: DO NOT READ BOOKS ON PPD!! PLEASE!!!! Seriously, I believe I would’ve been fine had I not gotten caught in that trap. The trap of fear from reading those stupid books that make you believe you won’t get better without psychotherapy and SSRIs, and the lie that having obsessive fears could mean you have OCD onset. It’s a bunch of crap, fueled by the drug industry. SSRIs are mainly placebo effect, and honestly, I don’t believe anyone should take them. If you take them, obviously, you don’t want to just quit taking them. Try to find a functional medicine doctor who can help you. Dr. Brogan’s site has a list of functional medicine doctors who may be in your area, and who could help you taper off medication.

Here are some things Dr. Brogan told me to do:
-Go on the Paleo diet (I use the Against All Grains Cookbook! 🙂
-Get on a strong probiotic
-Take 5 minutes everyday to meditate (I read the Bible, and meditate on God’s Word. Meditation was first mentioned in the Bible).
-She recommended different supplements for immunity, anxiety, and sleep.

Here’s the gist of what she recommended:
1. Obtain labwork (she had me do blood work when I was in NYC).

The salivary and Organic Acid kit will be sent to your house.

2. Dietary recommendations attached for the month.

This prescribes elimination of all grains which is preferable if you’re able. Check out the resources page on my website for US Wellness Meats and other options. If you want delivery of 30 days, here is the link: https://premadepaleo.refersion.com/c/a1d
A slightly less expensive option as well:

http://www.artisanbistropro.com/pc551504

I also recommend half a tbsp of apple cider vinegar in filtered water (just a shot’s worth) before meals for digestion.

I highly recommend incorporating bone broth and/or gelatin from Great Lakes into your diet. You can download Top 7 Foods from my website popup for more food tricks. Here is a breakfast option: http://kellybroganmd.com/article/transitioning-to-paleo-breakfast/

3. Other options to explore for the future

– Fisherwallace.com – these are available through me by prescription

– EMwave is a biofeedback device, separate item for home use which can help with sleep and concentration http://www.heartmathstore.com/cgi-bin/category.cgi?item=6300&siteID=bU_9I2tCX3Y-Fo2mUosXLVWsspdmkiHViw

Mindfulness – 5 minutes daily

4. Supplement recommendations:

For immunity

Immulox spray 3 morning and night for immune modulation

R-Hist – 2 twice daily if you can take the caps

Butyrate – 2 twice daily if you can (smells bad so you won’t be able to open it up)

For anxiety

Liposomal Glutathione – around 200mg twice daily If you have NAC, the dose is 3g daily divided in two

Lavender 80mg nightly

Inositol Powder – start with half a teaspoon dissolved in warm water morning and night with food

For sleep

Grounded – one scoop before bed

GlyZMag – one sachet before bed

Kavinace – 2-4 before bed

You may want to get started on these or wait for your blood results.

5. Referrals

Fearlessparent.org

I’m anxious to hear what Dr. Brogan says when my lab results are in. I want to help you if you’re going through PPD, which feels like a living hell. You wouldn’t believe how bad mine has been if I told you. Honestly, I don’t want to talk about it, but I do want to help you out! I realize most people can’t just fly to NYC to Dr. Brogan, I really can’t afford it either, but I’ve been desperate to be well. My powerful, and expensive probiotic should be in at the pharmacy tomorrow. I have very few healthy gut bacteria, so I think the probiotic will really help!

NEVER EVER, EVER GIVE UP! Don’t you dare give up! Remember: “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength!”

This is NOT FOREVER, Sweetie!

XOXO,

Katie

Coming Out of Denial – Part 1

Best Day of My LifeI gave birth to my beautiful daughter, Elizabeth Kate, on October 7th, 2013. It was the most wonderful day of my life. The joy and love I felt for her was better than I had imagined. My dear family (minus my Dad and oldest brother, who were on business trips) came to visit us at the hospital, and it was the coziest, happiest day ever.

I decided I wanted her with us at all times in the hospital. That was mistake #1, since I was already barely functioning due to severe sleep deprivation. Note to mothers everywhere: let the baby be in the nursery so you can get sleep!

Not a Good Day at All
The very day after giving birth, all the feelings of joy and elation had left. Though I was still ever so love with my new bundle, I was too exhausted to feel much happiness. The fact that I had to have huge amounts of antibiotics due to being positive for GBS, I was given a narcotic for the pain from my episiotomy, and the other fact of getting probably no more than an hour or two of sleep in the hospital for 3 days, did not help in my ability to feel that boundless joy I’d dreamed about, while trying to get through a very difficult, or should I say horrendous pregnancy. I waited around for visitors (when I wanted to be sleeping), who took their sweet time, and my in-laws showed up unannounced for the second night in a row (I think calling is a common courtesy, or at least should be). The nurses were overly concerned about breastfeeding, even though Elizabeth was eating fine for a newborn, and the nurses were freaking out about her having some jaundice, though most newborns have it anyway! Thankfully, she ended up being fine, and we were able to go home and have her tested later.

Home Sweet Home?
I was in a terrible mood, but so excited to leave the hospital, I could hardly stand it. In fact, speaking of standing, I was just glad I could stand again. 😉 I’ll never forget leaving the hospital. I was excited, scared, exhausted, and ever-so anxious. I had ANXIETY. I HATE that word.

I was short with my husband, who I felt couldn’t do anything right. The whole world seemed different, but not in a way I felt I could relate to any longer. It seemed like it was still summer in a way, when we were admitted to the hospital, but now all seemed cold, and unfamiliar. I fell into a deep sadness about the simple life I would never have again.

My body was weak, so weak and tired, I could barely stand for more than a few minutes, as my legs felt like rubber, bending to and fro. A weakness I had never experienced came upon me, and a form of exhaustion I had never known, despite my history of chronic insomnia. ‘How did I think I could handle this? Am I fit to be a mother? My husband doesn’t have a clue what he’s doing, and he was the one who insisted on kids! What am I going to do? How will I get through this?’

Suddenly, I didn’t know who I was anymore, and I knew something was very wrong with this picture. To be continued…

Symptoms of Postpartum Anxiety and Depression: http://www.postpartumprogress.com/the-symptoms-of-postpartum-depression-anxiety-in-plain-mama-english