Postpartum blues, or baby blues, is the term used to describe transient mood disturbance in the immediate postpartum period. It is common, affecting 15% to 85% of postpartum women worldwide, a wide range that reflects the lack of standardized evaluative criteria. Although differing rates have been reported globally (from 15% in Japan to 85% in the United States), postpartum blues is described in all cultures and has long been a recognized phenomenon. The condition is characterized by tearfulness, irritability, and mood instability. The word blues is a misnomer, and some patients describe elation during this time. Often, women describe feeling anxious or overwhelmed and experience changes in sleep and appetite.

A “peaking phenomenon” has been widely described as characteristic of postpartum blues, in which negative ...

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