postpartum depression

Black Mothers Get Less Treatment For Postpartum Depression Than Other Moms

Portia Smith’s most vivid memories of her daughter’s first year are of tears. Not the baby’s. Her own. “I would just hold her and cry all day,” Smith said. At 18, Smith was caring for two children, 4-year-old Kelaiah and newborn Nelly, with little help from the partner in her abusive relationship. The circumstances were difficult, but she knew the tears were more than that. “I really didn’t have a connection for her,” said Smith,…

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Postpartum depression risk, duration and recurrence

Postpartum affective disorder (AD), including postpartum depression (PPD), affects more than one in two hundred women with no history of prior psychiatric episodes, and raises the risk of later affective disorder for those women, according to a new study published in PLOS Medicine by Marie-Louise Rasmussen from Statens Serum Institut, Denmark, and colleagues. PPD is estimated to affect more than 5 percent of all women following childbirth, making it the most common postnatal complication of childbearing. In…

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Family factors may influence a child’s temperament

A new study indicates that a child’s temperament may be influenced by maternal postpartum depression, maternal sensitivity, and family functioning. Maternal depression was associated with difficult temperaments in infants when maternal sensitivity was low, but not when maternal sensitivity was high. Family functioning similarly moderated these links. The findings suggest that family factors play a critical role in shaping the trajectory of an infant’s behavioral style as it unfolds over development. Full story of family…

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Clinical trial evaluating potential treatment for postpartum depression

Researchers at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine announced the publication of results from a multi-site phase 2 clinical trial with brexanolone, an investigational medication, in the treatment of severe postpartum depression (PPD). Currently, there are no drugs specifically indicated to treat postpartum depression, which affects an estimated 10 to 20 percent of all mothers who give birth, according to Samantha Meltzer-Brody, M.D., M.P.H., director of the Perinatal Psychiatry Program at the UNC…

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What Effect Does Prenatal and Postpartum Maternal Depression Have on Children?

The results of a large study do not support the notion that prenatal and postpartum maternal depression is particularly detrimental to children’s psychological development. Instead, the most robust effects were found for maternal depression occurring during children’s preschool years. The analysis examined 11,599 families including 17,830 siblings from the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort study. Using sibling comparisons, investigators accounted for genetic and shared environmental factors, as siblings share family environments and their mothers’ genetic…

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Postpartum psychosis big risk for mothers with bipolar disorder

Pregnant women with bipolar disorder and their families and physicians should be aware of a significantly higher risk for developing postpartum psychosis, according to a new Northwestern Medicine review of literature on the rare and under-researched disorder. Postpartum psychosis almost always stems from bipolar disorder but is often missed because of its rarity and lack of research on the subject, according to the review from Northwestern Medicine, Stanford University and Erasmus Medical Center in the…

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Text messages a good way to support mothers with postpartum depression

A Saint Louis University research paper published online March 16 in JMIR Mental Health explores the feasibility of helping low-income mothers through postpartum depression using text messages. Corresponding author Matthew A. Broom, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics at Saint Louis University and SLUCare physician at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center, formed the Happy Mothers, Healthy Families program in 2013 with a three-year, $316,140 grant from the Maternal Child and Family Health Coalition (MCHFC). Other authors include…

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Monoamine oxidase A: Biomarker for postpartum depression

Many women suffer from baby blues after giving birth. Some even develop full-blown postpartum depression in the weeks that follow. Monoamine oxidase A, an enzyme responsible for the breakdown of neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, plays an important role in this condition. In comparison to healthy women, women who experience postpartum depression present strongly elevated levels of the enzyme in their brains. This was discovered by a Canadian-German research team including Julia Sacher from the…

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