Postpartum depression (PPD) is a public health issue affecting about 1 in 8 women who have recently given birth, according to research conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). COVID-19 likely exacerbated instances of postpartum depression by decreasing access to social and professional support and heightening infant and parental health concerns.
Black women have a significantly higher risk of developing postpartum depression than white women. But they are less likely to receive care for it.
Low-income white women are twice as likely to initiate mental health treatment after delivery compared to low-income Black women, according to a 2011 study in the journal Psychiatric Services. Black and Latina women who initiated care are less likely to receive follow-up treatment or continued treatment.
Postpartum depression is debilitating and can be characterized by mood swings, irritability, sadness