How to Help Dads with Postpartum Depression: A Journey to Healing

postpartum depression in das's

postpartum depression in dad is an important issue that affects many new fathers, although having far less discussed. After the birth of a child, men experience a roller coaster of emotions similar to those experienced by mothers, even though sometimes these can turn into depression. This blog examines the causes, symptoms, and treatment options of postpartum depression in dads before offering suggestions for management.

Getting to Know Postpartum Depression in Dads

After the birth of a child, dad may experience postpartum depression, often referred to as paternal postnatal depression. While postpartum depression is usually linked to moms, 10% of new fathers also experience this illness, according to studies. The changes and challenges that come with being a parent can be overwhelming for anyone, and fathers are no exception.

Causes for Dads’ Postpartum Depression

modern father dealing with newborn
Male Postpartum postnatal depression PPD. Tired sad man sits near the cradle with a newborn baby. The young father is on the floor and hugs his knees. Flat vector illustration on a blue background

Dads can get postpartum depression for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Hormonal Changes: Although women are frequently mentioned when discussing hormonal fluctuations, fathers can also change hormones including cortisol, estrogen, and testosterone. These changes in hormones might affect one’s emotional state and mood.
  • Sleep Deprivation: Because newborns need to be cared for constantly, both parents frequently experience severe sleep deprivation. Lack of sleep can make anxiety and stress more severe, which can lead to depression.
  • Increased Responsibilities: For new fathers, the amount of work that is associated with having a kid can be overwhelming. Depression and feelings of inadequacy may arise from the need to provide, protect, and support people.
  • Relationship Changes: Raising a child may trigger a lot of changes in a couple’s relationship dynamics. Feelings of loneliness and sadness can be increased for fathers who are abandoned or separated from their spouses.
  • Fathers who have had psychological issues in the past, like anxiety or depression, are more likely to have postpartum depression.

Symptoms of Postpartum Depression in Dads

postpartum depression in men

The symptoms of postpartum depression in dads can vary, but common signs include:

  • Irritability and Anger: Fathers may unusually feel irritable without any specific cause, due to which they get angry suddenly at any time.
  • Withdrawal from Family and Friends: These people start avoiding family gatherings, start isolating themselves, and do not like to socialize much.
  • Feelings of Sadness and Hopelessness: Such people start feeling loneliness, hopelessness, and emptiness in their lives due to which they start going into postpartum depression.
  • Fatigue and Lack of Energy: Even after taking proper rest, fathers feel very tired and fatigued.
  • Changes in Appetite: A lot of change is also seen in eating habits, whether one starts overeating or one does not feel hungry at all and this is also one of the reasons for going into depression.
  • Difficulty Bonding with the Baby: Many fathers face a lot of problems while bonding with their newborns due to which they end up feeling guilty and sometimes even depressed.
  • Physical Symptoms: Headaches, stomachaches, and other unexplained physical symptoms can also be manifestations of depression.

Treatment Options for Postpartum Depression in Dads

Recognizing and addressing postpartum depression in dads is crucial for the well-being of the entire family. Here are some treatment options:

  1. Therapy: Speaking with a mental health professional can provide fathers with the tools and strategies to manage their depression. Consider online therapy through services like Talkspace which facilitates couple therapy and postpartum depression therapy.
  2. Medication: Explore medication options on WebMD or consult your doctor. It’s important to consult with a healthcare provider to determine the best course of action.
  3. Support Groups: Joining a support group for new fathers can provide a sense of community and understanding. Sharing experiences with others who are going through similar challenges can be very therapeutic.
  4. Lifestyle Changes: ITry incorporating regular exercise with apps like Peloton a healthy diet, and adequate sleep can significantly improve mood and overall mental health. Fathers should also make time for activities they enjoy and self-care.
  5. Communication: Open communication with a partner about feelings and concerns can help alleviate some of the stress and pressure. Enhance your relationship with apps like Lasting

Tips for Managing Postpartum Depression in Dads

In addition to seeking professional help, there are several strategies that fathers can use to manage postpartum depression:

  1. Acknowledge Your Feelings: It’s important to recognize and validate your feelings. Postpartum depression is a real and serious condition, and seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness.
  2. Build a Support Network: Surround yourself with supportive friends and family members. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help when you need it.
  3. Set Realistic Expectations: Parenting is challenging, and it’s okay to feel overwhelmed. Set realistic expectations for yourself and understand that it’s normal to have ups and downs.
  4. Prioritize Self-Care: Make time for activities that you enjoy and that help you relax. Whether it’s reading, exercising, or spending time with friends, self-care is essential.
  5. Stay Informed: Educate yourself about postpartum depression in dad. Understanding the condition can help you recognize the signs and seek help early.
  6. Focus on Bonding: Spend quality time with your baby. Engaging in activities like feeding, changing diapers, and playing can help strengthen your bond and improve your mood.


Postpartum depression in dads is a serious and often overlooked issue. By understanding the causes, recognizing the symptoms, and seeking appropriate treatment, fathers can effectively manage this condition. With the right support and resources, new dads can navigate the challenges of parenthood and enjoy this special time with their families.

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