The Edinburgh Test: do I have postnatal depression?

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Test results from the doctor
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The Edinburgh Test is a simple, multiple-choice questionnaire to help see if someone is suffering with postnatal depression. The test asks questions about the last 7 days - your mood, your nerves, your sense of humour, your happiness and whether or not you've considered hurting yourself.

Each of the 10 questions has 4 multiple choice options as answers, and depending on how you answer, you are given a score. The greater your score, the more likely you to be suffering from PND and the more severe it is.
To someone who's never had a baby or suffered with postnatal depression, it may seem odd that diagnosis requires such a simple test. Surely you know if you're suffering with depression? Unfortunately it's not that simple. When you're in the midst of the chaos that often surrounds the arrival of a new baby, it can be difficult to know your own mind.

Having a baby is one of the most challenging things you will experience in your life. Your body is physically recovering from a huge event, you're getting practically no sleep, your hormones are all over the place and you're learning to look after a whole human being who can't even hold its own head up!

Eight out of 10 women experience the baby blues, which can start a few days after the baby is born and normally stops by the end of the first week. It can leave a new mum feeling anxious, tearful, constantly worried about your baby's welfare and completely overwhelmed with the responsibility of motherhood.

What often happens is that the lines between baby blues and PND get blurred and women don't realise they need help. Postnatal depression can also emerge up to when your baby is about one year old.
This is when The Edinburgh Test is really useful.

It's strongly advised that your GP or health visitor gives you the test. This is because they are trained to make a diagnosis based on the answers you give AND by talking to you about how you feel. This is why we've taken the decision not to publish the exact questions and answers here. If you think you might be suffering with postnatal depression, self-diagnosis is not the way forward. You need to go and see a professional who knows what they're doing and how to help you.  

Where to next?

Postnatal depression: The facts and where to get help

'My daughter's first year passed in a blur of tears and anger' PND: my story

His story: a new dad's perspective on his wife's PND

Celebrities who've spoken out about their postnatal battle

PND: a reminder that you WILL get better - print off and keep!

Breastfeeding with PND

Women's voices of PND 

PND - the advice I'd give myself

The hashtag PND lifelines on Twitter

'I thought about driving into the central reservation on the Spaghetti Junction'

Help us help mums in our #PNDyourenotalone campaign

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