You might have seen the adorable TLC show 'Outdaughtered,' about the only all-girl set of quints in the country. This season, the girls' father Adam is diagnosed with postpartum depression (PPD). He confides in his wife and ends up seeing a doctor.
That prompted a lot of fans to ask how it's possible for men to get PPD.
To VERIFY, we consulted Dr. Thomas Valaoras, an OBGYN at Novant Health.
First, let's give this topic some background.
You probably know a mom who has developed what's known as the "baby blues." It's very common among moms who've just given birth.
They feel unexplainably sad, tired or weepy. The most severe case is known as postpartum depression, or PPD. It affects one in seven women and usually requires professional treatment.
Symptoms are different for everyone but generally include racing, scary thoughts, uncontrollable crying, fear of not being a good parent or or fear of being left alone with the baby. For moms, PPD's caused by a dramatic drop in hormones after birth.
So if it's hormonal, how then can dads get it?
Dr. Valaoras explained, "It's probably by association in the sense that since the husband and wife are a team, if the wife is going through changes post-partum...the husband by association would develop some of the symptoms as well, especially if there's a propensity in his family to have depression."
So, we verified dads can get postpartum depression, and it's typically brought on by the environment or family history. For both men and women, doctors say not to fight PPD alone. Talk openly with your partner, join a support group and consider seeking help from a licensed mental health provider.