Jul 04

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Can Postpartum Depression Affect Men? New Research on Paternal Depression

Can Postpartum Depression Affect Men? New Research on Paternal Depression

Can Postpartum Depression Affect Men?

New Research on Paternal Depression

New research highlights a growing trend of understanding postpartum depression and treating it earlier. In addition to focusing on mothers who are experiencing this condition, there is growing support for fathers who are also struggling after the birth of a child. Paternal depression is a real issue and addressing it can improve the health of both men and women.

Does Postpartum Depression Affect Men?

Most studies have focused on how postpartum depression affects women, but men can also suffer from depression after a baby is born. A study published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry reveals that men can also suffer from paternal depression. A total of 3,523 men participated in the study and shared how they felt before and after their children were born.

The researchers found that 4.3 percent of the fathers had paternal depression. Although this number may not seem high, it is still surprising considering that many medical professionals continue to doubt that paternal depression even exists.

How Can Mothers and Fathers Deal with Depression?

The new research highlights the importance of helping the entire family after a new baby arrives. Both mothers and fathers need support. Although there are screening tests for postpartum depression that are designed for women, there are no tests for men. Researchers believe that men also need a simple screening test.

Doctors have pointed out that parents who are suffering from depression have a more difficult time taking care of a newborn. A father’s depression can influence a child in a negative way and affect the quality of his life. This is why it is crucial that both parents recognize the symptoms of depression and seek help. 

How You Can Help

Multiple studies have cited that the stress of a new child can be overwhelming for parents. The lack of sleep, constant crying, multiple feedings and other issues can make it difficult for both mothers and fathers to stay healthy. You can help by offering your support and sharing some of the duties such as cooking, cleaning or looking after the child.

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