Having a baby undoubtedly changes your life forever, in pretty much all the ways you can possibly consider.
The period following birth can be one of the most exciting times in a mother's life — and one of the most stressful.
Because of the emotional and physical changes a woman endures after birth, it's common for mothers to experience the "baby blues," a term used to describe feelings of worry, unhappiness and exhaustion that many go through after having a baby, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
Less common and more stigmatized is a very serious condition known as postpartum depression, a debilitating illness that affects one out of nine mothers, Centers for Disease Control research shows.
To break down the stigma and use their voices to help other women, celebrity mamas like Chrissy Teigen and Courteney Cox have spoken out about their experiences, knocking down barriers as they help to pave the way for women to come.
Click through our slideshow to see which famous celebrity mothers have taken their lives back after struggling with postpartum depression.
Shields' battle with postpartum depression made headlines years ago after notorious Scientologist Tom Cruise criticized Shields for taking medication to treat the illness.
In fact, Shield's struggle was so intense that she wrote an entire memoir about the experience.
In Down Came the Rain: My Journey Through Postparum Depression, she wrote, "Having it does not mean you are not a good mother or that you are crazy. Above all, it does not mean that you don't love your child."prevnext
Cox's depression didn't appear until six months after her daughter Coco was born.
"I couldn't sleep. My heart was racing. And I got really depressed," Cox said. "I went to the doctor and found out my hormones had been pummeled."prevnext
"I had postpartum depression pretty intensely when Ever was born," Morissette said in an Oprah special. "I woke up underwater every day and [felt] that tar was being poured all over me, and I just didn't want to be alive."prevnext
On her own website, Paltrow described the five months after her son Moses was born as "one of the darkest and most painfully debilitating chapters of my life," adding that she didn't recognize it as postpartum depression until later.prevnext
"The postpartum depression I have been experiencing has impacted every aspect of my life," Panettiere revealed in a tweet to fans. "Rather than stay stuck due to unhealthy coping mechanisms I have chosen to take time to reflect holistically on my health and life."
The Nashville star underwent two stints in treatment for the illness after the birth of her daughter. Her character Juliette Barnes faced a similar struggle on the hit series.prevnext
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star opened up about her health struggle in an interview with Dr. Drew Pinsky. She revealed she felt "hopeless," "lost" and "worthless" after her first child was born.
"I suffered silently, and I don't want any woman to have to do that again," she said.prevnext
"At the time I was doing whatever I could for the baby, but I lost myself and it was really frustrating," Wilkinson told PEOPLE of the aftermath of birthing son Hank.
"It got pretty bad, [but] not to the point where I would harm my family. I was a great mom and did what I needed to, but I was definitely very depressed," she said.prevnext
Barrymore didn't experience postpartum depression with her first child, Olive, but developed it after daughter Frankie was born.
"...I didn't understand it because I was like, 'I feel great!' The second time, I was like, 'Oh, whoa. I see what people talk about now. I understand,' " she said.prevnext
Bryce Dallas Howard
"I seemed to be suffering emotional amnesia. I couldn't genuinely cry, or laugh, or be moved by anything," Howard recalled in an essay for Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop.
"Postpartum depression is hard to describe — the way the body and mind and spirit fracture and crumble in the wake of what most believe should be a celebratory time," she added.prevnext
The sweet mama of Luna is well known for being goofy and fun-loving, in addition to being the queen of sassy social media clapbacks. Her penchant for lightheartedness made her honesty about her struggle with postpartum depression all the more meaningful.
"Most days were spent on the exact same spot on the couch and rarely would I muster up the energy to make it upstairs for bed. There was a lot of spontaneous crying," she confessed in a personal essay she wrote for Glamour.prev