New parents at risk of postpartum depression

Studies show moms and dads at greatest risk during the first year of their baby’s life

Dennis Man
WebMD Health News

Reviewed by
Louise Chan, MD

September 7, 2010-Both mom and dad depression During the first year of life of an infant, I found a new study of my parents in the UK

Nearly 40% of new moms in the UK and 21% of new dads depression Although the child is 12 years old, the risk was most pronounced during the first year after birth, according to a study published in. Archives of pediatric and adolescent medicine.

“These high rates depression Not surprising because of the potential in the postpartum period stress For example, poor parents related to the birth of a baby sleepy, The demands on parents and the changing responsibilities of them, and the pressures this can put on marital relationships, “writes a researcher led by Dr. Shreya Davé of the London Medical Research Council.

In a new study depression Included were those who were young when their children were born, those who were more financially distressed, and those who had a history of the past. depression..

Researchers examined health records from the practice of more than 350 doctors in the United Kingdom from 1993 to 2007. From these records, we identified 86,957 families of mothers, fathers and children. Overall, 19,286 mothers developed a total of 25,176 depressions, and 8,012 fathers experienced 9,683 episodes of depression between the birth of their child and the age of twelve. The incidence of depression was higher in mothers than in fathers. The study showed that the highest rates were observed in the first year after the birth of the child.

Dad also gets postpartum depression

“Although the literature on maternal depression and child outcomes is well established, there are few studies on paternal depression,” the researchers write.

In the future, depression screening needs to be strengthened not only among new dads but also among new moms. stress..

“Depression occurs disproportionately among new parents, and the study also reveals that it affects both mothers and fathers,” said Dr. James F. Paulson, an associate professor. increase. Pediatrics At Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk.Paulson recently has over 10% of his new dad depression Prenatal or Postnatal Baby-Twice the rate found in adult males.

He says there are many reasons why the risk of depression after childbirth increases.

To get started, there are all the changes that every new parent will experience, including redefining who you are as a person and redefining your relationship with your partner. sleepy Deprivation, and finances stress“All of this can have a significant impact on mothers and fathers,” he says.

The question is what can be done about maternal and paternal depression.

“New or promising parents need to recognize depression as a risk,” he says.

It affects the whole family, including children.

Recognize and treat postpartum depression

“Mom and dad depression has a long-term adverse effect on child development, mental health“He says.

But you don’t have to deploy it this way. “If recognized, depression can be completely treated in both men and women,” Paulson says.

“There is no clear line between mood problems and depression. It’s a creeping situation,” he says.

“We’re looking for a mood in the garbage dump and a lot of depression over the past 1-2 weeks, especially frustrating,” Paulson says. “Not only are I depressed, but I’ve also lost interest in something that was so much fun before.”

Another factor is that any of these symptoms interfere with daily activities, he says. “If it’s difficult to get out of bed and interact with children and the world, that’s a more alarming sign.”

Ian Cook, MD, Professor of Psychiatry at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior at the University of California, Los Angeles, agrees.

“Depression screening should be applied not only to new dads, but also to new moms,” he told WebMD. Doctors need to ask new parents if they have felt sad, depressed, bluish, or usually lost interest in bringing joy in the past few weeks. “

“If the answer to any of these questions is’yes’, we need more extensive follow-up,” he says. “There is clear evidence that we should ask our new dad these questions and treat them so that they can be the best parents possible.”

Leonhoffmann, MD, co-director of the Pasera Parent-Child Center of the New York Psychoanalytical Society, adds that such treatments should focus on providing more social support to the entire family.

“The most important thing is to develop a system of social support for new mothers and fathers who do not have the right support system in place,” he says. “This is a very effective intervention, but it is often very difficult to implement.”

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Source: Dr. James F. Paulson, Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk.

Davé, S. Archive of pediatric and adolescent medicine, 2010.

Leon Hoffman, MD, Co-Director, PASELA Parent-Child Center, New York Psychoanalytical Society.

Dr. Ian Cook, professor of psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles, Institute of Neuroscience and Human Behavior.

© 2010 WebMD, LLC. all rights reserved.

New parents at risk of postpartum depression

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