"Explore with an open mind. Question. Learn. Grow. Share."
I currently work at the Center for Mind and Brain at UC Davis where I researche adolescent brain development. I received my PhD in Psychology from the University of Melbourne, Australia studying cognitive development in children with mental health problems. Prior to my academic career I worked under the Settlement Grants Program, to help integrate recently arrived refugees into Australian society. I have a strong international background having lived in five different countries across four continents. I have more than seven years of experience working with children and adolescents.
Thank you for your feedback. For me two keys issues in addressing this problem are:
1) Increasing awareness: It might be worth discussing physical consequences of giving birth during pregnancy to increase awareness and provide realistic expectations regarding the healing process. Knowing what to expect including what not to expect can empower women to seek help and be more assertive when their body does not recover well.
2) Follow-up care: Perhaps regular meetings with an empathetic health professional 1,3, 6 and 12 months after giving birth who screens for any persistent physical and mental problems and can initiate appropriate referral would help. I emphasize empathy here because I think it is absolutely crucial for mothers to have a space to be listened to and cared for, a space where they feel their concerns are taken seriously.
I am sure there are many other ways of addressing the problem. I am sure the OpenIDEO community will come up with creative solutions. I am looking forward to the Ideas phase.