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What is the safest antidepressant while breastfeeding?

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Being a first time mom is hard.

On top of postpartum body changes and how your body feels after giving birth, you may also experience postpartum depression.

If you’ve experienced depression before or have new depression symptoms post birth, you’ll want to seek help from your doctor.

They will give you the best advice for your unique situation and body.

However, you should also educate yourself on the safest medications to take while breastfeeding to make sure you receive the best possible care.

Women holds head in frustration as she deals with postpartum depression.

Safe Antidepressants To Take While Breastfeeding

There are plenty of safe antidepressant options to take while breastfeeding.

These medications are safer to use while breastfeeding than while in utero because while the medication is excreted into breastmilk, it’s in small quantities and usually doesn’t cause harm to the baby.

According to the National Library of Medicine, “Sertraline, paroxetine, nortriptyline, and imipramine are the most evidence-based medications for use during breastfeeding.”

The brand names Zoloft and Paxil represent two of the most popular and safest known options.

Single Care says “Zoloft is the best-studied antidepressant among breastfeeding moms, and it is undetectable in the blood of the breastfeeding infant. Paxil is also undetectable in most cases.”

Be aware: One of Zoloft’s main side effects is weight gain, so if you notice your weight loss has stalled or the scale is moving in the opposite direction, it may be time to consider different options.

I’ve personally had a lot of success with Bupropion without any yucky side effects.

RELATED: Can Breastfeeding Cause Irregular Periods?

Other Benefits

Taking or continuing to take antidepressants after birth, can also increase a woman’s ability to successfully breastfeed and breastfeed for the recommended six months.

Take time to learn each of the important things to know about breastfeeding and ways to set yourself up for success.

However, if you do find that breastfeeding contributes to your anxiety or depression, you should give yourself permission to stop.

Remember to practice self-awareness and self-care. Do the things that empower you to be your best self for your baby!

Uncommon Depression Symptoms to Look Out For

Most women are familiar with the common depression symptoms such as sadness, loneliness, loss of appetite, etc. These are the items most likely listed on the healthcare checklist you receive from your doctor.

However, postpartum depression can also manifest itself as extreme anger or rage. These are lesser-known and lesser appreciated side effects of PPD or Postpartum Mood and Anxiety Disorders (PMAD).

If you notice these thoughts and feelings, seek help from your doctor right away.

Remember to not get discouraged or feel ashamed. PPD is a common occurrence, and most women who seek treatment and receive mediation are able to feel more like their normal selves and happily function as a new mom.

Here are even more helpful first time mom tips, including must-have first time mom books, newborn sleep tips, and smart newborn baby hacks to make your life easier.