PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Author, activist, model and pop culture figure Chrissy Teigen announced today that she is partnering with Allegheny Health Network and AHN’s women’s health program AHN Women to launch #MyWishForMoms, an initiative that aims to create open dialogue among women about postpartum depression and anxiety.
“When I was approached with this opportunity, to help be the voice for women experiencing postpartum depression and anxiety, I thought, ‘this is perfect!'” Teigen said. “I’m grateful to be able to use the platform that I’ve been given to reduce the stigma that many women feel when talking about these very real and treatable conditions. I wish I had known that postpartum depression can happen to anyone because I didn’t think it could happen to me. Here I was with my perfect little Luna and a supportive husband, yet I was truly struggling.”
Last year more than 500,000, or one-in-seven, new mothers developed postpartum depression, yet only 15 percent received treatment according to the American Psychological Association. Postpartum depression is characterized by extreme feelings of sadness, anxiety and exhaustion that can threaten the well-being of moms, babies and their families.
“My wish for moms is that they know they aren’t alone and they are supported by the more than 500,000 women who share their experience each year,” said Teigen. “Imagine if we can get as many people talking about postpartum depression and anxiety as those experiencing it and let then know help is available.”
Throughout Maternal Mental Health Month, observed in May, Teign will ask moms to share what they wish they would have known about postpartum depression and anxiety using the hashtag #MyWishForMoms. AHN Women will also educate families on the warning signs of postpartum depression and anxiety as well as available treatment options via MyWishForMoms.org.
“We have created a novel therapeutic environment that brings available resources to women and their families in an effort to help get them well, bond and grow together,” said Dr. Sarah Homitsky, a psychiatrist and Medical Director of Women’s Behavior at AHN. “We are so pleased to work with Chrissy and commend her for being open about her own experience in order to help other families.”
Teigen recently visited the AHN Women Alexis Joy D’Achille Center for Perinatal Mental Health in Pittsburgh to met with women who have received treatment for postpartum depression and/or anxiety. Joining the patients on the AHN Women’s green sofa, she filmed a series of videos highlighting each woman’s story and demonstrating how AHN’s program is changing the way postpartum depression and anxiety are treated.
“This wonderful new facility is the culmination of our journey and vision for transforming the way postpartum depression is diagnosed and treated,” said Cynthia Hundorfean, President and Chief Executive Officer, AHN. “The D’Achille family’s passion and determination, together with our organization’s commitment to excellence in women’s and mental health, has resulted in a truly game-changing program at AHN that is improving the lives of countless women and their families.”