Our expert says:
Sorry to hear about these worries. Let's see. Bipolar Disorder tends to be chronic, though there are a number of medicines which can limit the number and severity of episodes, of either Depression or Mania, including Lithium and a number of other medications such as a number otherwise more usually used to treat Epilepsy. Shrinks tend to prefer, if possible, to avoid using any such drugs during pregnancy, though they always need to assess the situation carefully, to balance the relatively small risks to the baby of the mother being on such meds, versus the risks of having a mother in a mania or severe Depression.
Your descriptions sounds like she may very well be experiencing a Post Natal Depression, a condition which needs to be taken seriously, but which generally responds well to treatment. Yes, with anyone taking an antidepressant, there is a small risk of their tipping over into a manic episode, but the risk is not high, and maintaining observation and assessment of her condition can identify this, should it happen, early on, and make treatment easier. Re-starting the Lithium, too, could be usefully protective here.
I understand, too, how difficult it is to handle this sort of situation, especially when your family is distant, and you have the worry of a wife who is unwell, and a new baby to help care for. GOod luck with this task. Proper assessment and treatment should make this manageable.
Do keep in touch through this forum, if you wish, and let us know how things go
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