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Hayden Panettiere: "Anyone who thinks post-partum depression is fake needs their head examined"

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Actress Hayden Panettiere has opened up about her struggle of dealing with post-partum depression and called for anyone who thinks it is a false condition to have their "head examined".

The 26-year-old, who stars as Juliette Barnes in Nashville, gave birth to her first child with fiance Wladimir Klitschko, called Kaya, in December 2014.

She checked into rehab for treatment for post-partum depression in October 2015.

Hayden Panettiere at the 2014 Emmys, three months before giving birth

Hayden Panettiere at the 2014 Emmys, three months before giving birth

Speaking candidly about living with the condition to Yahoo! Style, Panettiere described it as "one of the most debilitating, scary, guilty feelings" she had ever experienced.

And she had a few choice words to say to anyone who does not believe the condition to be real.

She said, "That a mother would not be able to connect with their child, would not be able to get a grip, or would not know what's going on, for anybody to say that it's false or created by us, you must have your head examined."

She added, "If you think for one second that a mother wants to feel that way toward her child, you're outta your mind."

Hayden Panettiere's daughter, Kaya, with her fiancee

"The loves of my life": Hayden Panettiere's shared this snap of her daughter, Kaya, with her fiancee

After taking time off work to deal with the condition, Panettiere returned to work at the beginning of the year. And in a bizarre coincidence, her character on Nashville is also suffering from past-partum depression.

"It was strange having to throw myself back into that frame of mind," she said. 

Playing Juliette in Nashville

Playing Juliette in Nashville

Panettiere had initially been worried about publically speaking about the condition, but said she had been "floored" by the support she received from fans and castmates.

“I was always so terrified that people weren’t going to accept me,” she said. “I finally just went, I’m tired of living afraid. I’m tired of living in fear of what people are going to think, so, you know, I’m just going to put it all out there on the table and I’m not going to worry about the judgment.”

"I feel much more exposed, yes, but in a great way.”

On the red carpet with her fiance, Wladimir Klitschko

On the red carpet with her fiance, Wladimir Klitschko

If you, or someone you know, is dealing with post-partum depression, you can find more information from the NHS here or read about further treatment options on Mind's website here.

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