Engage Aotearoa

Reducing Post Natal Depression

How to decrease the chance of getting postnatal depression

MEDIA RELEASE: Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand

31 October 2012

The fifth Dragon Baby story posted on the Mental Health Foundation’s English-Mandarin Kai Xin Xing Dong website is intended to support and encourage new parents.

The story’s theme this week coincides with the lead up to Postnatal Depression Awareness Week 17-25 November

Gill Graham, from the Maternal and Infant Mental Health Team – Nga Whetu Taiohi – at Counties Manukau District Health Board, advises Asian immigrants about common mental health issues for new parents and how to lower the risk of postnatal depression


According to Gill, the most common mental health issue for a new mother is postnatal depression. She talks about how mothers and fathers can identify when things are wrong and gives some practical ways to feel better.

The Mental Health Foundation also supplies an excellent free postnatal depression pamphlet for English speakers.


We are posting one Dragon Baby story a week, for seven weeks, about the challenges Chinese parents face bringing up their newborn “dragon babies” in New Zealand society.

We understand that new parents need help and support and, sometimes, just by knowing where to find these can be all you need to feel more confident. We hope by reading these parents’ stories people will not feel so alone.

The stories also give lots of practical advice for the first years of a child’s life and beyond. They also touch on post natal depression and where to get help.

The series coincides with the launch of the Chinese Mental Health Consultation Services’ new Vagus helpline.

All stories are published online in English and Mandarin.

Vagus Line             0800 56 76 666      

This new service is to promote family harmony among Chinese, enhance parenting skills, decrease conflict among family members (couple, parent-child, in-laws) and stop family violence.

It provides free, confidential and professional advice, such as parenting strategies and communication skills. If necessary, clients can be referred to Vagus counselling services or related resources.

Service hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 12 noon to 2pm

Year of the Dragon

2012 is the Chinese Year of the Dragon and has given rise to the phrase “dragon baby” for families expecting a new arrival.

The dragon is the mightiest zodiac sign in Chinese astrology, and is associated with traits such as success, ambition and independence. Many mothers consider this to be a particularly auspicious year to give birth.

In recognition of this, we have made a special Dragon Baby section on the Kai Xin Xing Dong website, where we offer Chinese language information for new and expectant mothers.

Kai Xin Xing Dong

Kai Xin Xing Dong is a Like Minds, Like Mine public education programme aimed at reducing the stigma and discrimination faced by Chinese people who experience mental illness. The project is funded by the Ministry of Health and guided by the Kai Xin Xing Dong Advisory Group.

For more information please contact:

Paula Taylor
Communications & Marketing Manager
DDI:   (09) 300 7025
Mobile: 021 300 594

For comment in Mandarin, please contact: 

Ivan Yeo
Mental Health Promoter
DDI:   (09) 300 7017
Mobile: 027 2808 972

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