OCD risk may increase following perinatal complications


Alan Underwood summarises a population based cohort study of 2.4 million Swedish children, which highlights links between perinatal risk factors such as smoking during pregnancy, and later development of obsessive compulsive disorder.

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Psychotropic medication in pregnancy: new evidence may help achieve a safe balance

pregnant with ipad

Joanne Wallace considers a recent health technology assessment on the risks and benefits of psychotropic medication in pregnancy, which supports previous associations between valproate and adverse child outcomes.

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Illegal drug use during pregnancy is associated with a host of complications for both Mother and baby

Mother and baby looking out window

The potential dangers of illegal drug use are never far from the media spotlight, and drug use during pregnancy may be associated with particular health problems both for the Mother and baby. Drug use during pregnancy has been linked with a number of negative outcomes, for example, cocaine use has been linked with an increased [read the full story…]

Low birth weight or preterm babies have an increased risk of personality disorders


Events that occur immediately before and after birth (perinatal factors) can often have a significant impact later in life. Research has shown that the risk of many mental health and neurological conditions (schizophrenia, ADHD, depression, autism and eating disorders) increases when complications occur around this time. However, there have been relatively few studies to date [read the full story…]

Maternal mental health pathway published by the Department of Health


A number of mental health issues can affect mothers, their babies and their families. This new guidance from the DH provides a pathway to help professionals support mental health and wellbeing, from pregnancy through the early months after birth. The pathway is primarily aimed at health visitors but will also be useful for midwives, mental [read the full story…]

Premature babies have greater risk of serious mental illness


Preterm babies are three times more likely to be admitted to hospital for a mental health problem as an adult than normal term babies, according to a study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry by researchers in the UK and Sweden. About 1 in every 13 children born in the UK are classified as [read the full story…]