Becoming a parent can trigger many powerful emotions, from joy and excitement to anxiety and fear. There are many new mothers who experience the “baby blues” after giving birth. These “blues” include mood swings and crying periods that fade quickly. Some moms experience more severe and long lasting forms of depression called postpartum depression. There are cases when the postpartum depression develops into postpartum psychosis after childbirth.
But this kind of mental condition does not affect only women. A new study shows that postpartum depression also affects the fathers, especially men who become fathers at a young age (in their 20s) and the symptoms remain at least during the child’s first five years of life.
For this study researchers have used data from a project involving more than 20,000 American teenagers in the 90s. The participants were asked 10 questions on depression symptoms in every few intervals of time. These young men were asked whether they felt tired, disliked or unhappy.
The study showing that postpartum depression also affects the fathers was published on April 14 and researchers say that the depression symptoms tend to increase during the first years of the baby’s life. The same study shows that being a young father doesn’t necessarily mean to suffer from postpartum depression. Researcher Craig David said that the study mainly indicates the time period when fathers are at risk of developing this condition.
Other important fact revealed by the study was that it is very important for a child to see the parents thrive. When young fathers and mothers suffer from depression, the children also tend to develop behavior problems and have difficulties with language and reading.
There are many studies that look into the risks of postpartum depression for mothers but research dealing with the young father’s mental health is much newer. Studies suggest that 5 to 10% of new dads develop clinical depression after the baby is born.
With new mothers, experts say that depression may come from a mix of emotional stress and biological changes that come with pregnancy and giving birth. The bodies of men are not affected by parenthood but their lives suffer a major change and for some these changes can be overwhelming.
Postpartum Depression Also Affects The Fathers – recent research reveals
What are your thoughts on this recent discovery? Have you experienced any signs of depression after becoming a parent? Do you have any advice for future parents? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.