New Parents at Risk for Depression

I read this article regarding new parents and depression, which I found to be quite informative and thought to share with you;

"Both mothers and fathers face an increased risk of depression after the birth of a child, and remain at some increased risk well into a child’s adolescence, a new British study shows.

The research, which tracked nearly 87,000 families in the United Kingdom between 1993 and 2007, found the highest risk for depression occurred in the first year after a child’s birth.

Overall, 39 percent of mothers and 21 percent of fathers had experienced an episode of depression during the first 12 years of their child’s life. After the first year of parenting, a mother’s risk for depression dropped by half, while experienced fathers faced only about a quarter of the depression risk as new fathers. Although depression risk for both parents dropped considerably in the second year, it remained steady through a child’s 12th year. (No data were collected from families with older children.)

Parents who had an earlier history of depression, who had children at a relatively young age or who had lower incomes were at highest risk for a depressive episode during their parenting years, according to the study, published online in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

Although the study wasn’t designed to determine the causes of the higher depression rates among parents, researchers speculated that several potential triggers could occur due to the everyday demands of parenting.

“We can hypothesize based on existing knowledge that the arrival of a newborn baby is stressful for both parents on account of lack of sleep, change in their responsibilities and the demands made on the couple’s relationship,” said Irwin Nazarath, a study co-author from the Medical Research Council in London, in an e-mail.

The study didn’t make direct comparisons between parents and those without children, but the incidence rates of depression among parents in the study were higher than those reported for the general population from the same database, Dr. Nazarath said.

'Hence we can indirectly conclude that the incidence of depression in parents is higher than in the general population,' he said.

In the past, most studies of depression after childbirth have focused on mothers. However, the new data show that depression among new fathers is also common, suggesting that prenatal programs and doctors should focus on depression risk in both parents.

'The U.K. National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence recommends routine screening for depression among postnatal mothers; however, no such policy exists for fathers,” the study authors wrote. “There is a need for appropriate detection of depression among fathers.'"

- Tara Parker-Pope, NY Times, 9/8/10

great post puppy

interesting as usual to read and digest

as always loving thoughts and positive vibes

D :)

Thanks Domestic! If I see anything of interest and that I think can help the group in any way, then I will share it. Thank you for reading it and for your positive feedback as always.

I had severe postpartum depression after having my 2nd child. One reason being going through alot of overwhelming changes in a short period of time. That is what the counselor, whom I saw for help, told me. He said he didn't know how I had been managing to hold it together for so long. I didn't have any postpartum depression with my first and last child. Main thing is if you feel depressed then see your doctor as soon as possible. The sooner the better. Don't wait for it to get any worse which is what I did. But with help and time, I was able to get better and recover. Thanks for the article!

Bluidkiti, I am sorry that you went through that, as I can imagine how difficult it was. Can I ask why it happened with our second child and not other children? As well, what do you feel like? I am just very interested in understanding postpartum depression more, as I hope to have children one day. Thank you so much!

poor blu

did it cause a lack of maternal bonding with the little one? is that why she is the most difficult child out of the three?

not having suffered myself i was totally gobsmacked when daughter one suffered. it made life almost a twilight zone to live in, she had ocd to start with but the depression was almost like living with a stranger, her ability to cope with even the smallest thing that needed doing for the child was done with sullen resentment and all her old habbits came back, good thing she lived at home cos spud wouldnt have survived waitin untill she moved.

it seems to have got better over the years but has left a residue of i wont say lack of love or care but almost a frantic i need to make up to him syndrome that has a life of its own

im glad it gets better

as always loving thoughts and positive vibes

D :)

My husband was in the Air Force during the time (January 1990-December 1991) and he was stationed in Incirlik, Turkey during the Persian Gulf War. We were married in 1986. He went into the Air Force in 1987. I was living with him in Turkey and 7 months pregnant with our second child when the war started. Once the war started, all dependents were evacuated from where we were. So there I was 7 months pregnant with our second child and with my oldest daughter who was 2 at the time. I, along with my 2 year old daughter, had to leave Turkey and come back to the states. I had to leave my husband and our home. We didn't have the internet and cell phones and all back then like we do now. I would go weeks at the time before I could talk to him. I came back to states and lived with my mother for 4 months. I had our second child while back in the states. Once the war was over, my husband kept saying he was coming home to get our daughters and me, but he could never get leave to do so. So finally, I went back when my second child was a month old. These trips, evacuating from Turkey and going back to Turkey, were the first times I had ever traveled over seas by myself. Once back in Turkey, my husband had to work all of the time. 12-14 hour shifts, 7 days a week and all at night. He would come in from work in the morning, go to bed, sleep for several hours, get up and eat then go back to work. The friends I had made prior to evacuating from Turkey had either left or were leaving to go back to the states because their husbands' tour of duty was up. I was alone alot, in a foreign country with our 2 children. Plus I had my 30th birthday. To call home and talk to my mom or anyone else was just way too expensive. The depression got really bad. I would cry and beg my husband to not leave me alone. One day, I literally clung to his leg begging him not to leave me alone but he had to go to work. I didn't want to be alone. I also had a great fear of dying. I had to go back and see my doctor once I stopped breast feeding to finish that part of my exam that you have after having a baby. So I went. I broke down in his office. He said, "I think you have come to see me for more than just your breast exam." We talked and he sent me immediately to see a counselor on the base there. I spent an hour talking to the counselor. I have to say during that one hour of talking was such a great release for me. I felt a little better afterwards. He also prescribed Prozac for me to take. I continued to see the counselor for a few months and began to get some better. I also stopped drinking alcohol during this time because alcohol would just make the depression worse. I have to tell you that when we left Turkey to come back home for good, I literally kissed the ground when we landed in South Carolina in the wee hours of the morning. I was so very glad to be back in the States and closer to home.

Oh my goodness Bluidkiti, I cannot believe all that you went through in that period of time. First of all, you are an incredibly strong woman for making it through such a difficult time successfully. I came out of it better and stronger than ever [I am sure]. I know have such a better understanding of who you are and how amazing you are [which I already knew]. Wow! Thank you so much for sharing your story, I truly appreciate it. It also really shows me how important it is to nip postpartum depression in the bud before it goes to dangerously far, which seems like it's an easy possibility.

blu

u are an amazing woman. to go thru that and still be able to talk about it and reach out and help others is nothing short of admirable

so good to hear u could take something like that and survive to the other side

loving thoughts and positive vibes

D :)

Thank you both. When our group (the dependents) left Turkey, it was in the middle of the night. I cried when I had to leave my husband. I get teary eyed now thinking about it. We were flying from Turkey to Germany then from Germany to the states. We were told they would roll out the red carpet for us when we got in Germany. We got at Rhein-Main AFB, Germany Saturday morning. No one was there to greet us. Our group was on our own figuring things out. When I went to pick up my luggage, I had some missing. I got my flight tickets for the states then had to go to lost and found about my luggage. The group of ladies I was traveling with told me they would try to hold the bus for me so we could stay together. The bus was to take us from the AFB in Germany to Frankfurt International Air Port. By the time I checked about my luggage, the bus had left. I was very upset and crying. I was alone, pregnant, with my 2 year old daughter in a foreign country. This man appeared and asked how I was doing. I told him I was not a happy camper and what had happened. He told me to wait where I was at that he would be right back. He came back and told me to go to this white car that was sitting right outside. It was his wife and daughter. He said they would take me to the air port. They did. They were my angels in this crisis. I made my flight. God bless them. The man who helped me happened to be the ex-commander from the base I was coming from in Turkey so I found out later. By the time I landed in the states and got in the car with my in laws I was worn out. I slept all the way home to my mom's house. I have to say that was one time I have never been so glad to see my mother in law when I was in the air port in the states. It had been a very stressful flight for me.

lol and i thought the navy were bad for abandoning its civilians i will never complain about my time traveling again

u still deserve a medal to have made it thru

as always loving thoughts and positive vibes

D :)

Wow Bluidkiti, the story goes on and on, it's so unbelievable to me that you went through that and came out of it so incredibly compassionate, positive and supportive on the whole, and being able to share with us here is beyond amazing to me. Thank you again so much! It truly touches my heart that you share such difficult memories with us but shed positive light on it by helping be such a strong example to us on. You truly amaze me!

Thank you both so very much. Yes, as with all of us the stories go on and on. I arrived in the states with just the clothes on my back. The suitcase I did have contained all my daughter's clothes. We stopped briefly at my in laws house before going to see my mom. My mother in law gave me a change of clothes and a night gown. We then went on to my mom's house. My mom gave me a change of underwear. God bless them both. The next day I had to go out and buy some clothes for myself to wear. When life hands you lemons, you make lemonade somehow. LOL :)

I am just still in such awe of you and your story, I can't believe what you've been through and where you are now. You are truly an example to us all of how to make it through hardships in such a healthy and positive way....and how to come out stronger on the other end of it. When I read your story, I feel that I should never ever complain, but embrace and appreciate everything that I have in my life.

Thank you again for sharing your amazing story, thank you for being you, and thank you so much for being here. You are such a blessing.

blu

to hear u laugh and joke about something so traumatic can only give others hope and inspiration

once more u have shown by your own experiences there is another side and i hope my own child and others come thru to be motivators and well rounded survivors of baby blues

as always loving thoughts and positive vibes

D :)