Most of us have heard of postpartum depression, which is a kind of sadness that may affect a mother after she has given birth to her child. However, depression may also strike during pregnancy, which is referred to as antepartum depression. According to research, just 7% of all pregnant women go through this stage. 

While pregnancy can be exhilarating, it also comes with a lot of stress and anxiety, which can exacerbate depression. Because the symptoms of antepartum depression are so similar to those of pregnancy, many women are unaware that they are depressed. However, being undetected can lead to issues with your emotional, physical, and mental health, as well as the delivery process and your baby’s health. Let’s look what does antepartum mean, the causes of it, consequences, and symptoms of antepartum depression in more detail.

What is Antepartum Depression and what does it mean?

Depression is a common mental illness that affects your thoughts, feelings, and actions. It may strike anyone at any time and should not be mistaken for melancholy because you are unable to snap out of it. Similarly, antepartum depression refers to depression that occurs when a woman is pregnant. The term antepartum refers to the period preceding delivery. Maternal depression, prenatal depression, and perinatal depression are all terms used to describe antepartum depression.

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Pregnancy Depression?

Because some of the symptoms of pregnancy coincide with those of antepartum depression,most women may be unaware that they are suffering from it. 

These are some of them

  1. Lower energy levels
  2. Fatigue
  3. Changes in appetite
  4. Changes in sleep
  5. Changes in libido

Other symptoms of antepartum depression can also include,

  • Pregnancy anxiety
  • Lack of confidence
  • Unplanned pregnancy leading to fear
  • Feel like you’re not prepared
  • Lose interest in activities you used to enjoy
  • Lack of motivation to take care of yourself
  • Feel unmotivated to follow a pregnancy health plan
  • Poor eating habits
  • Inability to gain enough weight


  • Unhealthy sleeping pattern
  • Smoke, drink alcohol or use drugs
  • Suicidal thoughts

What Are the Symptoms of Antepartum Depression?

Antepartum depression, like most other illnesses, can strike for no apparent cause. However, some illnesses and risk factors increase the likelihood of antepartum depression in some women.

1. Inadequate social support

According to studies, having people around you to support you during your pregnancy, whether It’s your spouse, friends, family, or other moms-to-be, lowers your risk of antepartum depression.

A pregnancy support group, a Lamaze class, or a baby nutrition group are all options. These will not only assist you in overcoming depression, but they will also allow you to learn more about yourself and your child.

2. Mood disorders are a type of mental illness that affects people.

Pregnant women who already suffer from anxiety or depression are more likely to have antepartum depression.

3. A bad sleeping pattern

When you are pregnant, getting a good night’s sleep is essential. There is a relationship between inadequate sleep and antepartum depression, according to several researches. Preventing antepartum depression might be as simple as improving your sleep cycle.

4.Deficiency in some nutrients

Despite the fact that much study is still being done on this subject, it is generally accepted that a lack of vitamin D, vitamin B, and minerals such as iron and zinc are linked to depression in women prior to childbirth.


Antepartum Depression Screening And Diagnosis

If you have any of these symptoms, you should see your doctor right once. The doctor will most likely request that you attend a screening test, which is nothing more than a questionnaire regarding your current state of health.

Antepartum Depression Treatment

Your symptoms may differ from those of others. So the only sensible course of action is to visit your doctor and notify them that you may be suffering from or at risk of developing antepartum depression.

Depending on your symptoms, your doctor will advise you on the best course of action.

  • Counseling.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and interpersonal psychotherapy.
  • Antidepressant drug therapy.
  • Exercising regularly.
  • Eating a healthy diet throughout pregnancy.

Treatment for antepartum depression can minimise the likelihood of negative consequences for your baby.

What Is Antepartum Depression and How Does It Affect Pregnancy?

Antepartum depression has been demonstrated in studies to influence more than just your mental and emotional wellbeing. It’s also connected to your physical health, as well as the well-being and cognitive development of your child.

Insomnia, lack of appetite, irritability, and trouble connecting with the infant are some of the

symptoms). Untreated antepartum depression in moms might affect their infant’s cognitive development. This includes: 

  • A greater chance of having learning problems.
  • Behavioral issues


Do not be afraid to seek assistance or support. Antepartum depression is a kind of depression that affects women before, during, and after pregnancy. Don’t compare yourself to others because every pregnancy is different. We may require medical care, just like anyone else with a health problem.

We don’t choose to be depressed, but we can choose to get out of it for the sake of our own and our baby’s health. Your obstetrician-gynaecologist (OB) will recommend the best treatment option for your depression during pregnancy.


     1) What is antepartum in pregnancy?

Ans: Antepartum care is a coordinated medical and psychological approach to support that begins before conception and continues throughout pregnancy. 

2) When does antepartum care begin?

The purpose of prenatal care is to keep you and your baby healthy throughout your pregnancy.      Prenatal care should begin as soon as you suspect you are expecting. During the second trimester, your healthcare practitioner may schedule prenatal care appointments every four weeks or so.

3) What are antepartum complications?

Hemorrhage, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, and infections are the most prevalent consequences. Placental anomalies or an incompetent cervix are the most common causes of antepartum bleeding beyond the first trimester, which can result in stillbirth and maternal death.

 4) Why is antepartum important?

Prenatal and prenatal care can help women avoid problems and learn about critical actions they can take to safeguard their baby and have a good pregnancy. Women can reduce the risk of pregnancy problems by receiving regular prenatal care.

      5) What does an antepartum nurse do?

Duties and responsibilities of an antepartum registered nurse include monitoring and caring for pregnant  patients who are having problems with their pregnancy but are not quite ready to give birth. Provide high-risk pregnant and perhaps postpartum mothers with nursing specialist care.