Recent Posts

Bonding Problems Emerge Early and Persist Across the First Year of Life

A mother’s emotional relationship with her baby begins during her pregnancy.  After her baby is born, the mother’s feelings about her baby, described as bonding, typically grow and intensify and become the foundation of the mother’s relationship with her child. Postpartum depression can profoundly affect how a mother interacts with her child and is a risk factor for impaired mother-infant bonding, which may include a spectrum of difficulties, including decreased maternal affective involvement, decreased attentiveness...

Interpreting New Data on the Use of Benzodiazepines During Pregnancy

Data regarding the reproductive safety of benzodiazepines has always been somewhat difficult to understand.  While earlier studies suggested an association between prenatal exposure to benzodiazepines and increased risk of cleft lip and palate, more recent studies have not demonstrated any increase in risk of congenital malformations.   Recently there have been a series of new articles on the reproductive safety of benzodiazepines. Benzodiazepines and Risk of Miscarriage In June, we reported on a study evaluating...

Weekly Roundup for DECEMBER 6, 2019: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

On the list this week, there are a fair number of articles which look at the impact of maternal depression on children’s well-being.  No real surprises, but more evidence that depression during pregnancy and during the postpartum period can have significant impact on the child’s well-being.   Nomura and colleagues looked at the impact of prenatal depression in women who were affected by Superstorm Sandy while pregnant, noting that exposure to this traumatic event amplified the...

Poor Sleep Quality During Pregnancy Increases Risk for Perinatal Depression

All women are at risk for depression during pregnancy and the postpartum period, and there is growing evidence to suggest that poor sleep during pregnancy and the postpartum period may be a risk factor for the development of perinatal depression. Undoubtedly the interplay between sleep and depressive symptoms is quite complex. Does sleep disruption cause depression? Or is sleep disturbance merely an early symptom of a depressive illness? In a prospective cohort study from China,...

Weekly Roundup for NOVEMBER 29, 2019: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

Several articles on this week’s list look at adverse childhood experiences or ACEs in the mother and their impact on her offspring.   Experiencing adversity in childhood is associated with negative health and mental health sequelae which persist into adulthood. There is now increasing data to indicate that maternal childhood adversity can negatively impact a woman’s children.   Racine and colleagues observe that ACEs increase a woman’s vulnerability to both depression during pregnancy and postpartum depression. ...

Cannabis and Breastfeeding

At this point, nine states and Washington, DC have legalized the use of recreational marijuana.  Another 30 states have legalized medical marijuana. The downstream effect of these changes has been a significant uptick in the use of cannabis among women of childbearing age.  According to data collected from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the use of cannabis in pregnant women rose from 2.37% in 2002 to 3.85% in 2014 in the United...