Postpartum Depression Signs: Factors That Make New Dads Feel Depression

New dads risk depression too study says

They concluded that interventions to target fathers at increased risk of depression would be beneficial for families. According to CNN, dads are more likely to experience symptoms of depression if they are under stress or if their health is suffering - and those symptoms can surface both before and after their child's birth. Elevated postnatal depression symptoms were found in 153 individuals or 4.3 per cent of the participants.

Overall 8.3 per cent of men reported a history of depression compared with 17.9 per cent of women.

"Discussing the risks of depression with expectant mothers and fathers would provide information about where to seek help and social support should one of them develop symptoms", the authors wrote.

Although there is still work to be done, scientists are slowly getting to the bottom of postpartum depression and what causes it. 3,523 men have been evaluated while their partners were in their third trimester of pregnancy, and then again nine months after the pregnancy. Based on the study findings, 82 fathers, or 2.3 percent, had elevated symptoms of prenatal depression.

But afterwards men are more likely to be depressed if stressed out before the arrival of their child, they had broken up, were ill or lost their job. "The lack of screening for paternal depression in New Zealand mirrors the worldwide situation", explained the study's lead author Lisa Underwood.

Poor health and stress were said to be aggravating factors for the 217 men who became depressed.

But women aren't the only group that can be affected by postpartum depression: New dads can struggle with it too.

Research fellow and the study's author Lisa Underwood of Auckland University said there should be a focus on both the mother and father's mental health. A 2015 report in the American Journal of Men's Health showed up to 13 percent of new dads report depressive symptoms, like agitation, anxiety, sadness, and stress, which are typically associated with the "baby blues" - the intense period of hormonal fluctuation moms experience after giving birth.

Researchers don't know why some women are more vulnerable to postpartum depression, though they suspect genetics, previous mental health issues, and sleep deprivation after birth all could play a part.

'Given that paternal depression can have direct or indirect effects on children, it is important to recognise and treat symptoms among fathers early'.

Postpartum depression is still significantly less prevalent among men than among women.

New dads also often questioned the legitimacy of their feelings and worry that needing support for themselves would detract from support for their partners, Littlewood said.

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