Mother’s Depression Linked To Not Quite So Tall Children

Mothers who’ve reported depression after the first year of birth may be more likely to have shorter children.

After scouring the data of 6,500 children in preschool and kindergarden, researchers from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health found that mothers who had mild to moderate depression after giving birth were 40% more likely to have children with short stature compared to mothers who were not depressed.

The study suggest there’s a link between mothers who are depressed and the height of their children.

In some cases the stunted growth did not last for the children past the age of five.

Here’s what a researcher said:

“There’s already very good reasons that mothers who are depressed should seek treatment. This is one more additional piece of evidence confirming that this is important.”

Nearly one out of every five mothers is reported to have postpartum depression and symptoms for their children sometimes include poor fetal growth, language and cognitive delays, and behavioral problems in children, as well as difficulty in mother-child bonding.

Here’s what another researcher said:

“These children already start with a great disadvantage. What we’re seeing is that there’s not simply a psychological effect, there’s also a physical effect involved here.”

We agree that mothers who feel depressed should get medical help not only for their own well being, but for their children’s too.

It’s definitely incredibly important.

Sep 14, 2012 9:27am PDT

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