Every week we review the most recent publications in women’s mental health, covering topics related to premenstrual symptoms, perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, use of medications in pregnant and breastfeeding women, perinatal substance use, and menopausal mental health.

For more detailed descriptions of many of these topics, you can sign up to receive our weekly CWMH NEWSLETTER which comes out every Thursday.

Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD



No articles this week


No articles this week


Global prevalence of perinatal depression and anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic: An umbrella review and meta-analytic synthesis – PubMed

During the COVID-19 pandemic, depression and anxiety were common, affecting almost one in three perinatal women globally. A high heterogeneity and a risk of publication bias were found, partially due to the variety of assessment tools and cut-offs.

Factors Associated with Depressive and Anxiety Symptom Trajectories Across Pregnancy and Postpartum in Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor-Treated Individuals – PubMed

Congruent with other studies, we found a high prevalence of co-occurring mood and anxiety symptoms and that past episodes of depression remain an important historical risk factor for perinatal symptom burden. This reinforces that past experiences of depression increase not only the risk of future symptoms but also higher symptom burden during antidepressant treatment.

Maternal outcomes related to Genetic and epigenetic Variation in the oxytocin system: A scoping review – PubMed

This scoping review found that genetic and epigenetic variation at the oxytocin and oxytocin receptor genes were associated with maternal caregiving behavior and mental health, likely through complex gene and environment interactions.

Do glycaemic treatment targets affect the perinatal mental health status of women with gestational diabetes? – Data from the TARGET Trial – PubMed

There was no evidence to indicate that adoption of tighter glycemic treatment targets in women with gestational diabetes alters their mental health status at 36 weeks’ gestation and at 6 months postpartum.

Barriers to access to mental healthcare among women in the perinatal period: a preliminary report – PubMed

This small study observed low levels of adherence to psychiatric screenings and referrals. Our findings confirm the importance of improving access to mental healthcare for women in the perinatal period.

Climate change anxiety positively predicts antenatal distress in expectant female parents – PubMed

Climate change anxiety accounted for significant percentages of variance in both antenatal worry and depression scores and, unexpectedly, neither the number of children nor perceived distance to climate change moderated these relationships.


Maternal treatment with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors during pregnancy and delayed neonatal adaptation: a population-based cohort study – PubMed

Infants exposed to SSRIs have increased risks of delayed adaptation in a type and dose-dependent relationship.

Risk of Autism after Prenatal Topiramate, Valproate, or Lamotrigine Exposure

The incidence of autism spectrum disorder was higher among children prenatally exposed to the studied antiseizure medications than in the general population. However, after adjustment for indication and other confounders, the association was substantially attenuated for topiramate and lamotrigine, whereas an increased risk remained for valproate.


Causal associations of Insomnia and postpartum depression: a two-sample mendelian randomization study – PubMed

genetically predicted insomnia was positively associated with postpartum depression. The odds ratios (OR) of PPD were 1.849 (95% (confidence interval) CI 1.011-3.381; p = 0.046).

Postpartum pain and the risk of postpartum depression: A meta-analysis of observational studies – PubMed

This meta-analysis found a potential association between postpartum pain and PPD.

Sleep, circadian activity patterns and postpartum depression: A systematic review and meta-analysis of actigraphy studies – PubMed

Postpartum total sleep at night was the indicator that was most closely related to the psychological functioning of women after childbirth.

The effectiveness of mother-led infant massage on symptoms of maternal postnatal depression: A systematic review – PubMed

The review highlights women who used infant massage displayed a reduction in symptoms of postnatal depression, improved mother-infant interactions and improved self-efficacy in addition to benefits for infants.

Postnatal depressive symptoms mediate the relation between prenatal role overload and responsiveness among first-time mothers – PubMed


No articles this week


No articles this week


No articles this week


No articles this week


A case-control study of filicide/infanticide in 90 mothers – PubMed

Family history of violent death, psychotic symptoms (OR 8.3; CI 95% 2.26-36.13), severe insomnia (9.8; 2.28-61.75), and a schizophrenia spectrum or bipolar diathesis (4.8; 1.22-23.86) were associated with history of filicide.

Reproductive Health Among Those with Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders: An Overview of Considerations Related to the Premenopausal Period, Pregnancy and Postpartum, and the Menopausal Transition, with a Focus on Recent Findings – PubMed

Despite the many important reproductive considerations for those with SSD, many aspects including menstruation and menopause have received very little attention. Further research is needed on how to best support women, non-binary, and transgender people assigned female at birth with SSD throughout the lifespan.

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