August 29, 2010,
E.L. asks from Saint Louis, MO on April 16, 2008
Hormones After Breastfeeding
I quit breastfeeding two months ago, but have yet to have a period. I am not pregnant, but would like my hormones to be back on track. I have been very down for the past 3-4 weeks, like I have PMS, but no period. I don't think it could be post partum depression at this point. Anyone had a similar situation? I just want to feel like myself again!
So What Happened?™
Thanks for all your help. It sounds like I just need to give it some time, and also realize that "normal" may not be what I should stive to feel anymore, haha!
K.N. answers from St. Louis on April 17, 2008
I have the exact same issue going on right now. I quit breastfeeding my 5 month old two months ago; no period yet but major moodiness that feels like post partum depression. I also had this with my first child. I called my doctor the first time and he gave me a medication or something to start my cycle. That fixed the problem and I plan to do the same at my appointment with him next week. Hope this helps you.
A little about me:
SAHM with two beautiful daughters (2 1/2 and 5 months old.)
H.H. answers from Kansas City on April 17, 2008
It always takes me several months after completely ceasing to breastfeed for me to get my cycle started again. You actually may be experiencing some post partum. Breastfeeding actually produces the "feel good" hormone in your body, so now that you are not having that, you are feeling down. I have dealt with post partum and it is not fun. I had it after both of my sons were born. You probably should talk to your OB and see if they think that this is something that will work itself out in a month or so, or whether you should take steps to get yourself on some medication. There are things you can do, as described by another poster, that will help you feel better. Try those things while you are waiting for the appointment with your OB. I had to take medication after both of my sons were born and I fought it, but after I was on the medication, I felt like myself again. And I didn't have to take the medication forever, just until everything in my body got sorted out.
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D.H. answers from Springfield on April 17, 2008
It is very normal not to have periods when you're breast feeding. This is good. Before birth control (which isn't good for you in many ways) this was God's way of insuring that you didn't have another baby until this one didn't need mommy milk any more. I breast fed all my children and feel blessed to not have had a period until they were eating solids regularly at about 12 months. Enjoy it, there is no problem.
D.-mom to 9
T.Z. answers from Topeka on April 17, 2008
Feeling down is probably caused by the major shift in hormones that your body is experiencing. The hormones of breastfeeding have a calming/relaxing effect on you and as they taper off and get out of your system you start to lose that effect. It sounds like you're just in between that stage and returning to your normal cycle. I've heard that it can take a few months after weaning for your cycle to return and more than a year after giving birth for some women to have normal cycles again.
N.H. answers from Columbia on April 17, 2008
Be patient. It WILL come.lol. And then you wont want it. Any ways it took a few months after I stopped breast feeding my daughter to get my period. I didn't get mine until 4 months after I had ended breast feeding. So don't worry it's fine. You have nothing to worry about. Good luck to you and your son. Enjoy every minute of it because they grow soooo fast.
A.D. answers from St. Louis on April 17, 2008
E., congratulations on your son! I would talk to your doctor about the no period thing, but is probably one of those things that nature will work out when the time is right. You are right that your other symptoms sound like post partum depression which will not work itself out- will only get worse in time. Talk to your doctor about getting some help on this one- it is so worth it to just feel more like yourself again.
I am a 36yr old mom of 5 ages 9 to 9 months who has had post partum depression and also work as a nurse in the mother-baby area for the past 5 years.
best of luck to you! :)
L.H. answers from St. Louis on April 17, 2008
You could be quite surprised at what post partum depression feels like, its different for everyone. Talk to your obgyn about your feelings of being "down". I had similar feelings when my daughter was about that age (although she is 7 now) and he seemed to think it was post partum depression. I had multiple other stressors in my life at the time, everyone's situation is different, but it is always worth talking about to someone. Hormomes can wreak havoc on a woman's body after childbirth and breasfeeding, and although I wouldn't give the experience back for anything, I would opt to tweak it a little. Hang it there and seek out the support that you have available around you.
T.T. answers from St. Louis on April 17, 2008
I breasfed for 14 months, and after 3 months of no period and feeling depressed, I called my OB-GYN and they gave me a shot to jump start my cycle. It was confirmed that I was experiencing post partum, due to stopping the breat feeding and I have been prescribed a low dose of Lexapro, and it has worked WONDERS for my moods, irritability and cyclic patterns. Please discuss with your MD, and don't let the blues turn into something more! Therese
K.M. answers from St. Louis on April 17, 2008
I wouldn't be so sure that you don't have a bout of the baby blues. You don't have to have the extreme symptoms that you hear about in order to have Postpartum depression. I would talk to your OB, they may want to see you. I experienced it shortly after having my children, but it never escalated to the point of needing medication. I wouldn't hesitate to give your Dr. a call. You shouldn't have to feel like that...you want to enjoy your time with your new little one.