Postpartum Depression

Postpartum depression (PPD) is a form of depression that can occur in women, and sometimes even men, after birth. It is associated with symptoms such as depression, loss of interest in normal activities, sleep and eating problems, emotional instability, and feeling overwhelmed. Postpartum depression onset usually begins between two weeks to a month after delivery.

First-Time Parents

It is often said that nothing can prepare the expecting parents for the dramatic changes that the birth of their newborn brings to their lives. Aside from extreme emotional attachment of caring for the newborn there are many sudden and extreme emotional and behavioral changes that are very hard to imagine and prepare for before the arrival of the infant. Parents experiencing child birth for the first time go through physiological as well as emotional upheaval that is unprecedented in their lives.

By the time of birth, the mother’s body has gone through gradual but extreme changes to provide the right environment for the healthy development of the fetus and ultimately the birth itself. Hormonal fluctuations can cause extreme variation in mother’s mood and mental health and more.

There are physiological and behavioral changes during childbearing and after the birth that have extreme consequences on the overall health of both parents and in turn the infant. Sleep disorder and circadian rhythms disruption are amongst the most consequential problems facing the first-time parents as both of these disorders are highly associated with many mood disorders as well as chronic diseases. Although the physiological changes during the pregnancy and childbirth effects the mother, the postpartum disruptions could be a life-changing experience for both parents.





Hormonal fluctuations can cause extreme variation in mother’s mood and mental health and more.

Pregnancy, Childbirth And Sleep Disorders

Without a fail almost all parents to newborns experience a great change in their ability to enjoy sleep in the way they used to. As the infant’s circadian rhythms are not yet developed and a regular feeding and sleeping pattern is yet to establish parents must follow an unusual pattern that is extremely disruptive. Even a healthy baby wakes up every few hours to be fed and comforted. This causes an enormous strain on the mother who has already been through tremendous physical and psychological stress of the child bearing period and the child birth.

This disruption in sleep can cause sleep disorders such as, insomnia and excessive sleepiness during the day. Lack of sufficient sleep has been proven to be associated with many dangerous physiological chronic diseases as well as many mood disorders. Sleep disorders affect both parents almost equally during the first months and longer. The mother’s sleep disorder could start during the pregnancy and continue postpartum.


Research indicates that sustained disruption of the circadian rhythms can lead to many physiological and mental disorders.

Postpartum Depression Signs And Symptoms

Postpartum depression (PPD) is a type of depression that occurs after giving birth. It is a common and serious condition that affects approximately 10-15% of new mothers. The following are common signs and symptoms of PPD:

  • Persistent feelings of sadness, anxiety, or hopelessness
  • Loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable
  • Lack of energy and motivation
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or inadequacy
  • Difficulty bonding with the baby
  • Changes in appetite or sleep patterns (circadian rhythms disruption)
  • Irritability or anger
  • Withdrawal from friends and family
  • Thoughts of self-harm or suicide






Causes of Postpartum Depression

The exact cause of postpartum depression (PPD) is not known, but it is thought to be a combination of physical, hormonal, and psychological factors. Some of the factors that may contribute to PPD include:

  1. Hormonal changes: The rapid drop in hormones such as estrogen and progesterone after childbirth can contribute to PPD.
  2. Life stress: The stress of caring for a new baby, coupled with the physical and emotional changes of childbirth, can be a major contributor to PPD.
  3. Sleep deprivation: Lack of sleep, which is common with a new baby, can contribute to feelings of fatigue, irritability, and depression.
  4. Genetics: Family history of depression or mood disorders may increase the risk of PPD.
  5. Past history of mental health issues: Women with a history of depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues may be at higher risk for PPD.

Postpartum depression is highly associated with sleep disorders and circadian rhythms disruptions. 
It is important to note that PPD is a treatable condition and support is available for those who are struggling. If you are experiencing symptoms of PPD, it is important to reach out to a doctor or mental health professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.


Waking up on odd hours of the night to take care of an infant is extremely stressful for parents, but the physical and emotional stresses are not just relevant to the time of attention to the newborn. When the child calls, mother or father usually flip the light on and walk to the baby to attend to her/his needs.

This act starts a process that disrupts the circadian rhythms as well as sleep for hours to come and for days after. When the bright light is switched on at night, the brain gets a message through the eyes that it is daytime and the body must wake up and be active for the day’s work. This is simply our on-off switch located in the brain that sees the blue component of any light as the signal for daybreak and in turn kick-starts the body into the day mode. It takes only 30 seconds for the light to suppress the production of melatonin which is an extremely important circadian rhythms hormone and helps the quality and duration of sleep.

To attend the baby when waking up, before turning the light on, the new parent can wear Circadian Eyewear in order to stop the blue light from reaching the retina. By doing so, a condition called the virtual darkness keeps the brain in the night mode.  While wearing Circadian Eyewear the blue light from the bright electrical lights does not cause melatonin suppression in the brain as it is eliminated by the eyewear. This lack of disruption in the flow of melatonin helps the new parent with ability to sleep right after the night feeding or comforting the baby and stops disruption of the circadian rhythms.

The parents get better rest and their night-time rhythms are not disrupted which helps with many of the symptoms of postpartum depression as well as those caused by sleep disorders and circadian rhythms disruptions. This also causes a less stressful and better interaction with the infant which has a calming quality.   

Start wearing Circadian Eyewear two hours before sleep each night to allow for better circadian rhythms entrainment and better sleep quality. Wear them each time you wake to attend the baby or doing anything thereafter until your regular wake time or morning.

 Circadian Eyewear Collection








Research from PubMed 

Sleep, daily activity rhythms and postpartum mood: A longitudinal study across the perinatal period.

Infant sleep and feeding patterns are associated with maternal sleep, stress, and depressed mood in women with a history of major depressive disorder (MDD).

Plasma Melatonin Circadian Rhythms: Low in Pregnant, Elevated in Postpartum, Depressed Women, and Phase-Advanced in Pregnant Women with Personal or Family Histories of Depression

Mother-Infant Circadian Rhythm: Development of Individual Patterns and Dyadic Synchrony

Maternal and infant activity: Analytic approaches for the study of circadian rhythm.

Mother-infant circadian rhythm: development of individual patterns and dyadic synchrony.

Circadian Phase Shifts and Mood across the Perinatal Period in Women with a History of Major Depressive Disorder: A Preliminary Communication.


Research Sources