Women's Mental Health | During & After Pregnancy | MedStar Health
Team members from MedStar Georgetown University Hospital's Women's Mental Health department sit together for a group photo.

Support for women before, during, and after their pregnancy

Medstar Georgetown University Hospital’s Department of Psychiatry, in conjunction with the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, offers a unique program for women. This program provides outpatient evaluation and treatment for psychiatric disorders and problems of adjustment to women in their childbearing years.  

Our program recognizes the importance of providing specialized mental health care for women, particularly surrounding pregnancy and childbirth. In doing so, we value a woman’s unique biology and rich emotional life, as well as the centrality of social relationships. 

When being a mom isn’t what you expected

What if being a mom isn’t what you expected? About 10 to 20 percent or of new moms experience a perinatal mood or anxiety disorder (PMAD), which can begin any time during pregnancy or the first year after childbirth. PMADs are treatable illnesses that can cause feelings of sadness, guilt, indifference, anxiety, and/or intrusive thoughts. It might feel like having a baby is too hard, or you wonder if you’re a bad mom—but it is in fact an illness that will get better with help.  

Perinatal mood or anxiety disorders include postpartum depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, or postpartum psychosis.  


Medication management

For some women, psychiatric medications will be a necessary part of treatment. In those cases, our psychiatrists, who have expertise in treating this specific population, are available.

We provide initial diagnostic evaluations, psychoeducation, expert second opinions, and collaboration with other treatment providers involved in the woman’s care toward providing a multidisciplinary treatment plan. Family members or partners may also be involved in consultations.


  • Depression and anxiety during and after pregnancy 

  • Postpartum depression

  • Management of psychiatric disorders in pregnancy 

  • Complicated pregnancies 

  • Pregnancy loss 

  • Transition to motherhood 

  • Balancing personal and professional life 

  • Relationship problems 

Support our perinatal intensive outpatient program

A pregnant mother looks joyfully at her small child.

Help build a perinatal intensive outpatient program that meets expectant and new mothers where they are and provides personalized support to turn their struggles into healthy pregnancies and successful transitions to motherhood.

Mothers with perinatal mental health issues are our sisters, our daughters, our nieces, our friends, and our neighbors. Through our collective commitment, we can provide solutions that will prioritize the health and wellbeing of mothers so they can care for their babies and create loving, stable, and healthy families in our communities.

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