Mental Health Issues During Pregnancy
UW Health psychiatrists offer treatment and care for women with mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia, who are pregnant or are considering starting a family.
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Pregnancy and Mental Health Concerns
UW Health Psychiatry has a program that works with women and families to create treatment plans that protect the health of both prospective mothers and children. Pregnancy can mean changes in treatment for women with psychiatric illnesses. UW Health psychiatrists work with women and their primary care doctors and obstetricians to find the safest medications and management for a healthy pregnancy and birth.
Our psychiatrists work with patients and care teams to:
- Find the best, safest treatment plan for women who are pregnant or want to become pregnant
- Fully explain all options and risks both treating and not treating potential pregnancies
- Work with primary care doctors and obstetricians to make sure everyone involved in the patient's care is on the same page
- Work with fertility doctors to determine the right medications for women with mental health issues who are receiving fertility treatments to become pregnant
Medication and Pregnancy
The use of psychiatric medications in pregnancy continues to raise concerns and often women with mental health issues may be discouraged by their family, friends, and doctors when contemplating pregnancy. UW Health's psychiatry program believes that women with mental health issues who want to become pregnant deserve the opportunity to start families safely and with careful consideration of their mental health needs.
UW Health psychiatrists carefully evaluate the risks treatment pose to the unborn child with the risks untreated mental illness poses to the mother and child. The health concerns that result from not having effective treatment can pose a risk to a healthy outcome. Women with untreated psychiatric illness:
- Are more likely to smoke
- Are more likely to abuse alcohol and drugs
- Are more prone to pre-term delivery and other obstetrical complications.
The effects of untreated mental illness can have an adverse impact on both mother and child. Inadequate maternal care for mental health concerns can result in poor health for the children early in life. UW Health has met this health need by providing a specialized program to work to develop treatment plans with the goal of good health for mother and child, both during pregnancy and after birth