postpartum eating disorder; Symptoms and ways to deal with it

Pregnancy and having a baby is one of the sweetest experiences for women in their entire lives, but this sweet experience is accompanied by problems and complications that can disrupt daily life. slow After giving birth, many problems may arise for the mother, one of which is eating disorder. Read more about postpartum eating disorder and ways to deal with it. postpartum eating disorder; Symptoms and ways to deal with it

Pregnancy and having a baby is one of the sweetest experiences for women in their entire lives, but this sweet experience is accompanied by problems and complications that can disrupt daily life. slow After giving birth, many problems may arise for the mother, one of which is eating disorder. Read more about postpartum eating disorder and ways to deal with it.

Why should we care about postpartum problems? postpartum eating disorder; Symptoms and ways to deal with it

After giving birth, many physical and mental problems await mothers, but sometimes mothers who have just given birth do not take these problems seriously due to the advice of those around them. These new mothers are usually told that these problems are normal. This point is true, but the fact that some of these problems are normal does not make us ignore them and do nothing to solve the problem. The truth is that after the birth of a baby, there are many stressful factors that can Make you susceptible to postpartum nutritional disorders. As wonderful as having a new baby is, transitioning into motherhood and accepting this responsibility can undoubtedly be a stressful life event. It's like having an unpleasant body image and disordered eating behaviors. Without awareness and support, this can turn into more problematic issues, including severe eating disorders and other mental illnesses.

If you're struggling with eating and how you feel about your body after having a baby , know that you are not alone.

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What are the causes of eating disorder after delivery?

First of all, it is necessary to know where the postpartum eating disorder originates from. Eating disorder is usually influenced by many factors and stimuli that together create such a disorder. This is the reason why after giving birth, the possibility of getting it increases because there are many stimuli during this sensitive period. including the following:

Eating disorder during and before pregnancy

If you struggled with an eating disorder before or during pregnancy, these conditions may increase your risk of developing an eating disorder later. It increases the risk of childbirth, which continues up to 2 years after birth.

Some mothers with eating disorders during pregnancy may feel better in this regard under the pretext of protecting their babies.

The birth of a baby can cause a return to eating disorder behaviors before pregnancy; Because the mother may no longer be afraid of a direct impact on the child.

Newborn trauma

Many studies have proven a strong connection between trauma and eating disorders. Experiencing a traumatic or difficult birth can lead to a difficult postpartum experience and increase the risk of developing eating disorders, among other factors. Studies have shown that up to 35% of women report their birth experiences as traumatic.

For a mother with a history of an eating disorder, a traumatic birth experience can be a major risk factor for the recurrence of this problem after delivery.

Other mental illnesses during pregnancy

It is estimated that 1 in 5 new mothers suffer from maternal mental health disorders, such as postpartum depression or anxiety.

Mental illnesses are often associated with other problems, meaning that if a mother is dealing with other mental health concerns, the possibility of developing an eating disorder after childbirth increases.

Physical body changes

After giving birth, mothers face significant changes in their bodies in a short period of time from pregnancy and childbirth. For many women, these changes can be uncomfortable and difficult to cope with.

Unfortunately, the social pressure to lose weight quickly caused by pregnancy makes many women want to lose weight after giving birth.

Emotional Stressors

The transition to adulthood and maternal responsibilities for women adjusting to caring for their newborns. are, it creates emotional stress. Motherhood brings identity changes that bring about changes in relationships, careers, self-awareness, and more.

These evolving changes bring emotional stresses that must be dealt with during pregnancy and postpartum. it's hard. When everything around you is in chaos, it's easier to focus on what you feel you can control. For many postpartum women, this controllable factor includes food and weight.

Pressure to breastfeed

Many mothers feel pressured to give their babies their own milk. They are faced with the fact that this causes problems in their mental health; especially if to physically unable to breastfeed.

This extra pressure, along with breastfeeding challenges or the inability to breastfeed, can hinder a mother's ability to have good nutrition.

The nutritional relationship between a mother and her baby is an important one, and when breastfeeding becomes complicated, it can be an additional stressor for the mother who is prone to postpartum eating disorders.

Shame About Weight

In today's society, the focus is on weight and obesity, it is not uncommon to hear comments about weight gain and body changes during pregnancy and postpartum. These comments may come from health professionals, family members, or friends.

Such comments, even if well-intentioned, are never acceptable about a new mother's body. Shaming a woman about her weight can be an incredibly strong trigger for postpartum eating disorders; Especially for a woman who may already be predisposed to developing an eating disorder.

Food insecurity

Not having proper access to adequate and healthy food, especially when caring for children, can be a contributing factor. Risk for eating disorder. Research has shown that food insecurity is associated with higher levels of binge eating and disordered eating.

Postpartum Diets for Weight Loss

Mothers Dieting for Weight Loss After Giving Birth They may put themselves at risk for an eating disorder. Many mothers may begin to restrict food or exercise too much as a way to cope with the changes in their bodies during pregnancy.

Family history of eating disorders

Women whose family members suffer from an eating disorder, may be at increased risk for developing an eating disorder. Genetics play an important role in the development of eating disorders, and a family history of mental illness can increase susceptibility among other factors.

Lack of support

Mothers who lack supportive relationships or self-care. and their babies receive little or no help can be at risk for postpartum eating disorders.

As described above, eating disorders that develop during the postpartum period are often They are the result of the combination of different factors together.

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7 signs of postpartum eating disorder Know postpartum eating disorder; Symptoms and ways to deal with it

It is important to understand that people with eating disorders experience psychological problems differently. There is no single set of criteria that can be used to classify postpartum eating disorder; Because every mother will have a unique experience.

Eating disorders do not discriminate for different psychological problems. That is, this problem occurs in mothers of all cultures, races, socio-economic backgrounds, etc.

It is also very important to know the weight, to determine if the mother may have an eating disorder after giving birth. It is not a sufficient criterion alone. Women struggle with eating disorders in bodies of different shapes and features. A person's weight, size or body shape cannot tell us what is going on inside her body.

The following symptoms may indicate that a mother needs more help and support to overcome postpartum eating disorder. Yes, but this list is by no means exhaustive.

If you're a new mom and struggling with any degree of eating or body care issues, these are enough signs to seek help from others.

Never think that you are "not sick enough" to need help from others. With this in mind, check for these symptoms in yourself:

Difficulty communicating properly and intimately with the baby

Mothers with eating disorders during pregnancy and after delivery They struggle, most likely they have a harder relationship with their child. There may be a weak attachment between mother and baby.

Postpartum mothers who have difficulty accepting their changing bodies may make their babies' dependence on them less bearable. These factors can negatively affect the bond between mother and baby.

Obsession with exercise

Mothers dealing with eating disorders may soon after having a baby hope Lose weight, exercise excessively, or become obsessed with exercise. Taking a period of recovery and rest after pregnancy and childbirth is necessary, but a mother with an eating disorder may find it difficult to sit still.

Sometimes this exercise competes with other important activities and responsibilities of the mother. . The mother may prioritize exercise over other things in her life and often continues to exercise at the expense of her own health and recovery. Mothers may feel that they cannot eat unless they have "earned" their food by exercising, or feel that they must exercise to eat anything.

Irregular Eating Patterns

Behaviors And abnormal eating patterns can be a symptom of postpartum eating disorder. These behaviors can be different for each person, but the following are red flags:

  • Restricted eating
  • Eliminating entire food groups
  • Restricting food or calorie counting
  • constant dieting
  • chewing and spitting out food
  • overeating
  • intentional vomiting after eating
  • Exercising too much after eating

Focusing too much on body changes and weight loss

Body changes are a natural part of the postpartum experience and the transition to menopause. It is becoming a mother. However, mothers with postpartum eating disorders are usually less able to cope with these changes. They may focus too much on certain aspects of their body, such as their stomach, and become preoccupied with losing weight and changing their body. They may also constantly weigh themselves or check their body to gauge any changes.

Thoughts of losing weight can become so obsessive that they become distracting and prevent normal activities.


Preoccupation with food

Mothers with irregular or restricted eating patterns often feel that they are constantly preoccupied with food. They may constantly worry about what to eat, when to eat, and how much to eat. Constantly thinking about food takes up most of their mental space and makes it difficult to focus on other things. Mental preoccupation with food is one of the primary symptoms of an unhealthy relationship with food that should not be ignored. Interacting with other people, including those closest to him, becomes difficult.

He may become isolated from family and friends and avoid social activities he used to enjoy.

p> The reasons are primarily due to feeling insecure about the body, preoccupation with food and irregular eating habits. including eating should or being forced to eat in front of others, avoid.

Negative body image

Mothers' dissatisfaction with their body shape may become unbearable to the extent that other Aspects of her life will be negatively affected.

She may avoid seeing friends, avoid going out in public, be ashamed of having sex with her spouse or partner, or be unable to care for herself and her baby. slow.

This type of body image discomfort that A new mother with an eating disorder may experience is often debilitating. See for yourself and your child:

  • Difficulty communicating between the baby and the mother, risk of insecure attachment to the baby
  • Breastfeeding-related challenges
  • Prolonged recovery time : Lack of nutrients after delivery due to diet or excessive exercise can make it difficult for the mother to recover after pregnancy and childbirth.
  • Malnutrition
  • Increased risk of mental health disorders such as Postpartum depression and anxiety. A study has shown that almost half of women with eating disorders also struggle with postpartum depression.
  • Family problems, marital tension

Prevention From postpartum eating disorder postpartum eating disorder; Symptoms and ways to deal with it

To prevent this disorder or solve it, you can do the following actions :

Avoid dieting at all costs: Dieting is a major risk factor in all eating disorders. While other risk factors may not be controllable, such as family history and birth trauma, you can reduce your risk by not choosing dietary behaviors. There are much more effective ways to deal with stressors and a changing body.

  • Get off the scale: If you are prone to eating disorders and weight fluctuations, please get off the scale immediately. Weighing yourself is often a trigger for destructive behaviors.
  • Have a postpartum care plan: This should be done during pregnancy and before the baby is born, if possible. It is important for you to consider a plan for how to take care of yourself; Physically, emotionally and mentally. You should anticipate that more stressors are coming and be prepared to deal with these stressors with effective coping strategies.
  • Break the silence: Eating disorders are hidden illnesses that thrive in isolation. If you have been able to keep your struggle hidden until now, you have gained nothing useful. Eating disorders are often associated with shame and stigma. But to help yourself and your child get out of this situation, you need to break the silence and get the help you need.
  • Get help from a counselor: If you know you are at risk for an eating disorder, Be sure to seek help from mental health professionals who specialize in the mental health of mothers.


Eating disorder after childbirth is one of the most common disorders. It is created under the influence of the mother's new conditions. If you have such a problem, before it negatively affects other parts of your life, take action to solve the problem and seek help from expert consultants.

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