The medical condition I chose to explain was Postpartum Depression (PPD) in females. This condition is one that affects eleven percent to forty-two percent of women globally after childbirth. Symptoms for postpartum depression include fatigue, sadness, exhaustion, avoidance, irritability, anxiety, poor child care, reduced sex desire, crying episodes, and changes in sleep and eating patterns. Why women develop PPD is still unknown. However, a study at the University of California, Irvin, reported the levels of placental corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH) during mid-pregnancy may help predict if a woman will get PPD. PPD can greatly affect the mother and child’s relationship by her inconsistent childcare. Because there is nothing but a scale to measure postpartum depression, society’s perspective on mothers with PPD is not very empathetic. They believe new mothers are neglecting their babies and are lazy. The illness experience can be bad for a mother already and as she discusses her illness narrative many individuals do not think it is of a serious matter. This may worsen her medical condition and prolong the experience. Westernized cultures have it in their mind that if there is not a legitimate test to be done, then the mothers are not really experiencing PPD, but instead are “bad mothers”. On the other hand, the Malay culture believe that a spirit resides in the placenta of a woman and when it is unsatisfied it causes the mother to experience frequent crying and poor motherly skills. In the Chinese culture, women are supposed to stay in bed for a month after they give birth to prevent PPD. Some cultures are more understanding than others and help the illness experience.
I believe what society and one’s culture think are different from what doctors know. Medical professionals have the knowledge and understanding to administer treatment to a PPD patient. They know that it is an actual medical condition. Most treatment for Postpartum Depression is counseling though. Women who join other women with PPD are more likely to share this illness experience and depend on one another and get the treatment they deserve.
I am a strong believer in mind over everything. When you put your mind to something it can be achieved. After watching, “Placebo: Cracking the Code”, I definitely think that our minds are greater than we think. For a pill that’s supposed to have no effect, have an effect, is incredible. Healing and belief go hand in hand. It has been proven that a pill holding no specific treatment has helped make people feel better. Also, in the video, it shows how someone can start to have with draws from a pill when it is not supposed to have an effect. I believe our bodies will do whatever our brain wants it to think and do. From my own experience, we recently bought a puppy and unfortunately it had fleas. I was unaware of this and picked it up anyways. I played with it and cuddled with it until my sister came out and told me what was going on. I immediately jumped in the shower and felt fleas swarming my body. I was itching like crazy. Only when my sister came into the room and told me I had no fleas on myself did I stop itching. My mind had tricked me into thinking I was being bitten by fleas and my body just went with it. I have never taken a placebo, but if my mind can have control over fleas like that, then there is no doubt that it can trick us into taking a pill and feeling different.
“Wikipedia: Postpartum Depression,” last modified July 24, 2014, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Postpartum_depression