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Depression in moms more common after four years: Study

Written by: QMI AGENCY
May. 22, 2014

According to a recent study, new moms are more likely to suffer depression after four years, as opposed to within the first year of having their child. (Fotolia)


Moms are more likely to become depressed four years after childbirth than in the first 12 months, a new Australian study found.

The study from six public hospitals in Melbourne followed 1,507 women from early pregnancy to four years postpartum.

The researchers found almost a third of the women reported symptoms of depression in the first four years after giving birth.

The likelihood of being depressed four years after childbirth was 14.5% higher than at any time in the first 12 months postpartum.

Women with only one child were more than twice as likely to report depression symptoms four years later, compared to women who went on to have more children.

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Having depression symptoms prior to pregnancy was the strongest indicator a woman would experience postpartum depression, but the researchers said young maternal age, stressful life events and intimate partner violence also contributed.

The study was published Thursday in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

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