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Breast feeding and antidepressants

(15 Posts)
hurricanemum Wed 24-Jul-13 17:53:10

I am breast feeding DD2 who is now 10 months. She has never taken a bottle, dummy, or any sort of pacifier (other than my boobs) I often co-sleep. I have been Suffering with PND since before the birth. Am feeling a bit better now but I am still nowhere near myself. I have declined medication from the start as bf very important to me and I have heard that people have found their milk dried up when taking antidepressants. Anyway, after ten months I feel that I am almost ready to give up and take some drugs! If I can last through to feeding DD for a year I think I could live with that (I fed DD1 until she self weaned at 2 when I was pregnant with DD2 so have always felt I ought to do the same for number 2). I have been accessing psychological therapy through local hospital but tbh it is of limited use. I think that if I don't get myself out of this depression I am going to lose my marriage. DH is seriously fed up of me and we are constantly arguing. I wonder if taking antidepressants might help me snap out of it a bit and be able to be a bit kind to myself and my hubby. Also have been having major naming issues since first registering DD2 and this is caught up in PND, exacerbating it (I feel) and dH is ignoring the issue and therefore it all just gets worse. (in a nutshell- Basically I wasnt sure on names, had a wobble, registered DH choice and have always regretted. Have trouble naming baby and using name, no birth announcement, name on door etc etc etc. terrible terrible guilt for all of the above)
Does anyone have experience of successfully breastfeeding on antidepressants? What are the implications? Obviously everything goes through to your milk which is why I have never taken them before (less severe PND during first pregnancy and after DD1) Which ones are better/worse? Would love some advice and thoughts on this.

SupSlick Wed 24-Jul-13 18:44:35

So sorry about the way you're feeling!
I'm still breast feeding DS (9 months) & started breast feeding-friendly antidepressants about 5 months ago. I didn't see a decrease in milk production (however whenever I'm flu-y I have no milk whatsoever)
Also, with CBT I am now so much better than I was (I used to sit by the front door with a bag packed ready because I thought social services would be coming to take my baby, I also didn't leave the house in a month because I thought the pram would blow into the road etc)

You've done well persevering this long without medication but if you are struggling then there's no shame in trying some.
There are always things that you can do if your milk supply dwindles, fenugreek works wonders!!

You seem to be doing all the right things to get better & there WILL be a day where you stop for a second & see how far you've come.

cookiewuk Wed 24-Jul-13 18:47:35

I developed PND after dc1 was born. I was very ill with pre-eclampsia and didnt get the support i needed in hospital to establish bf and i think that contributed to the PND. As I was bottle feeding i took anti-depressants and they definitely did help though not immediately. I continued taking them throughout my pregnancy with dc2 as my doc said it was better for me to be well. She did switch me to a different type however. I am currently bf dc2 without problem and continue to take the tablets as i feel myself wobble when i forget to take them. Hope that helps a bit x

leedy Wed 24-Jul-13 18:53:55

Sorry to hear you're feeling so bad. I breastfed DS1 on antidepressants for PND for over a year with no problems whatsoever in terms of milk production or DS1's health, and they were a great help to me. I took sertraline (Lustral/Zoloft), which is supposed to be the best in terms of how much gets into your milk:

I was prescribed them by my maternity hospital's mental health team, who were very reassuring about their safety in BF.

AidanTheRevengeNinja Wed 24-Jul-13 19:25:20

Sertraline is first choice and is basically fine. Minimally excreted in breast milk and safe, widely prescribed.

See your GP, and ask them to check with mental health team they aren't sure.

AidanTheRevengeNinja Wed 24-Jul-13 19:28:02

ps NICE guidelines for this are available online, I can link to it when baby goes to bed!

Lonelybunny Wed 24-Jul-13 21:07:00

Hello, you are doing so so well. I am breastfeeding DD 11 months , I have post natal anxiety and have been in a terrible state . I am 20mg citalopram just been increased from 10mg . It's done wonders for me so far. Milk is fine , no signs of drying up ? Dd also fine. Please don't suffer , do get some help .

Lonelybunny Wed 24-Jul-13 21:08:30

I was first prescribed seroxat/paxil as that's sposed to b safest but I didn't get on with it.

hurricanemum Wed 24-Jul-13 22:29:44

Thank you all so much for your replies. I think I put huge importance on bf and this has probably taken precedence over my own MH. I felt that the guilt I would suffer if I didn't bf would be more detrimental. In hindsight I am not so sure. I have massive problems with naming my lovely lovely girl and I wonder if this wouldn't have been so hard if I was a bit more sorted in my head. I have massive issues with stress- basically going into high alert and stressy mode at the slightest thing (although this is getting better). Crafting with my DD1 last week was HIDEOuS!!!! I take everything as a personal attack and this is so draining. DH is fed up. I am fed up. baby awake. Must go but thank you all again x

Lonelybunny Wed 24-Jul-13 22:56:55

I know where you are coming from . I think my PND stemmed from a house move when DD3 was 6 weeks old. I too feel like you do. Please go to your gP and continue to breastfeed if you wish . You can do both

SirBoobAlot Wed 24-Jul-13 23:00:13

There are several ADs that are safe to take whilst breastfeeding. Do go and see your GP; hope you feel better soon. x

hurricanemum Thu 25-Jul-13 11:23:34

Lonelybunny- totally empathise. We made a big move whilst I was heavily pregnant then had to live with inlaws until DD2 3 months old then another move. Seriously puts a strain on any vague sanity doesn't it!

working9while5 Thu 25-Jul-13 11:40:46


I am just beginning to wean off, began ADs with ds2 the day he was born. He is now 13 months and I am weaning off ADs and the boob simultaneously at the moment!

If you pm me, I have quite a lot of self-help materials I can share via email if you're not finding psychological therapies good. ADs are great as a way to take the edge off and enable you to access therapy much better, but I truly believe you have to make the psychological change to really knock this thing on the head.

working9while5 Thu 25-Jul-13 11:42:06

Sertraline here btw. I chose not to go above 100mgs as this seemed to be threshold some MIGHT excrete into milk (but only minimally).

Contradictionincarnate Thu 25-Jul-13 17:03:43

Be sure if you go to the Dr to refer them to breastfeeding network for advice on the antidepressants. I am going to try exercise instead of taking the drugs I was prescribed.

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