Maternal anxiety disorders in the postnatal period: what do we know?


Janes Iles and Annette Eneberi summarise a recent systematic review and meta-analysis of current research evidence on anxiety disorders and their prevalence amongst postpartum women.

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Sleep disruption during and after pregnancy may be associated with postpartum mental illness


Susie Johnson summarises a systematic review that explores the relationship between sleep disruption and postpartum mental illness, which reports a link between self-reported poor sleep during and after pregnancy and the development of postpartum depression.

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Breastfeeding and postpartum depression


Clinical Psychologist Sarah McDonald writes her debut blog on a recent cohort study of breastfeeding and postpartum depression, which concludes that the effect of breastfeeding on maternal depression is extremely heterogeneous.

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Preventing or reducing domestic violence against pregnant women: more studies desperately needed!

Bruised woman's face

30% of domestic violence (DV) begins during pregnancy and is most prevalent within the working and lower middle socio-economic classes. It is a major public health concern and abuse during pregnancy is of particular concern due to the health risks to both mother and child. It can cause physical and psychological harm to women, and [read the full story…]

Psychosocial and psychological interventions can prevent postpartum depression, says new Cochrane review

Pensive woman

The period after giving birth to a child can be difficult for women and in the first twelve weeks after childbirth 13-19% of women will experience post-partum depression (O’Hara 1996, Gaynes 2005). Post-partum depression is bad news – not only does it increase the chance of the mother going onto develop a severe clinical depression [read the full story…]

SIGN publish new patient booklet for women who have depression or psychosis during pregnancy or after the birth of their baby


SIGN (Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network) are the main producer of clinical practice guidelines in Scotland. They have produced a wide range of guidelines relevant to mental health over the years including publications on perinatal mood disorders and the non-pharmaceutical management of depression. They have also been widely praised for their excellent mobile apps, the first [read the full story…]

Mental illness following childbirth can help predict bipolar disorder in later life

sad woman

We know that it can take many years for people with bipolar disorder to be accurately diagnosed, following an initial episode of mental illness. This cohort study carried out by researchers from Denmark, the US and Wales, set out to study to what extent psychiatric disorders with postpartum onset (following childbirth) are early manifestations of [read the full story…]