THE BLOG

ADHD and Perinatal Mental Health

20/04/2015 11:31 BST | Updated 16/06/2015 10:59 BST

Every family going through any illness is different and must get away from putting people in boxes. We must listen to the patient more and find out if there any other underlying issues with the perinatal mental illness. Today's blog is about Perinatal Mental Health plus ADHD equals extreme importance. So what is ADHD and can it go into adulthood?

It tends to get better with age but can continue into adulthood. The over-activity usually gets less, but impulsivity, poor concentration and risk-taking can get worse.These can interfere with your work, learning and how you get on with other people. Depression, anxiety feelings of low self-esteem and drug misuse are more common in adults with ADHD. So you imagine if the father has ADHD looking after the partner with Postnatal Depression the two together must be extremely difficult.

After being diagnosed with ADHD at forty years of age and going through looking after my wife's server postnatal depression know from my personal experience it's a issue we need to raise awareness. I didn't know I had ADHD while going through the illness with my wife and now know it had to have an extremely massive impact. So why..Well with ADHD you may get easily distracted and find it hard to take notice of details, particularly with things you find boring. It's hard to listen to other people - you may find yourself finishing their sentences for them or interrupting them, or just saying things at the wrong time. It's hard to follow instructions. You find it hard to organise yourself and start a lot of things without ever finishing them. You find it hard to wait or when there's nothing much going on - you fidget and can't sit still. You are forgetful and tend to lose or misplace things. You easily get irritable, impatient or frustrated and lose your temper quickly. You feel restless or edgy, have difficulty turning your thoughts off, and find stress hard to handle. You tend to do things on the spur of the moment, without thinking, which gets you into trouble.

It's hard enough having perinatal mental health in the family unit and is very isolating. ADHD is only something you really understand if you have it yourself. After meeting someone who understand ADHD and set up her own charity, I could really understand it myself and didn't fail a failure. I would like to see care plans in place for families who are dealing with Perinatal mental illness and diagnosed with ADHD. It's hard enough having ADHD and the normal life, but to have the added pressures of perinatal mental health it must be an high priority. The two combined with no family support and lack of money in the household has a high price with many families.. And that is breaking the family unit up.

We must remember that there could be many other factors in the family home that is causing stress as well the perinatal mental illness. We must clearly ask the family unit what other issues are there apart from the illness that is causing families distress and not just use the EPDS. We know the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale is effective when used correctly and to add other questions alongside this could be a possibility could it. It's only my view and a view that some families agree with for sure. It's something I'm starting to feel needs awareness like perinatal mental health as like ADHD is often misunderstood. Like I have said on many occasions before, education and awareness is the key to this success and I'm sure with increase popular of social media sites and e-learning it can only get better.