Helping Kids Beat Depression… by Treating Mom

Melinda Beck:

Successfully treating a mother with depression isn’t just good for the mom; it also can provide long-lasting benefits for her children’s mental health, new research shows.
About 1 in 8 women can expect to develop depression at some point in her life. Incidences peak in the childbearing years, with as many as 24% of women becoming depressed during or after pregnancy. More than 400,000 infants are born to depressed mothers each year in the U.S.
And decades of research have borne out the old expression “when Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” About half of kids with depressed mothers develop the condition–three times the typical risk.
Sadness isn’t the only symptom. Children of depressed mothers are more likely to be anxious, irritable and disruptive than other kids.

2 thoughts on “Helping Kids Beat Depression… by Treating Mom”

  1. Yes, Laurie. From the same article:
    “Evidence is growing that depression in fathers affects children, as well. A study in the journal Pediatrics last month of 1,746 new fathers found 7% had an episode of major depression in the past year. The depressed dads were only half as likely to read to their children—but four times as likely to spank them—as the dads who weren’t depressed.”

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