Depression during pregnancy can change the brains of infant
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Women with a high risk of developing a baby’s brain that may be related to habits later in life, a small study suggests Women with depression or anxiety during pregnancy.

In the third quarter of their pregnancy, researchers asked 101 women to complete questionnaires on depression and anxiety symptoms. Overall, six mothers had major depressive symptoms, five had moderate depression criteria and 42 had mild depression criteria.
So, when they were about a month old, researchers took MRIs from children’s brains. In the babies who were born to women with at least moderate rates among pregnancy, they find further changes in the brain structure.
“Our study suggests that moderate rates of maternal depression and anxiety symptoms during pregnancy have been correlated with changes to the white matter microstructure of the mind or with’ wire’ within a month” said Douglas Dean III, Lead Research Author of Wisconsin-Madison University.
The trends in boys and girls are unique, “which may be due to girls with a range of pathways of growth and are affected differently by early experiences,” said Dean by e-mail.

Researchers note in JAMA Pediatrics that one in five pregnant females are affected by depression and anxiety, which are associated by mounting evidence with weaker psychological and behavioral outcomes.

Even if the symptoms of mums are not serious, they say. This is real.
Researchers have found in this research that maternal depression and anxiety are related to the changes in the so-called whiteness of the brain that interfere in interaction between various brain regions.
Untreated depression in pregnant women is more likely to require intensive care after the birth of the underweight children.

Increased risk of Suicide in the most severe cases, pregnant women with an uncontrolled depression may not eat well or keep pace with prenatal visits.

This research cannot demonstrate whether or not anxiety or stress can influence the brain development or psychological or behavioral development of infants during pregnancy.

It is not also clear whether changes in brain scanning will continue as children get older or whether any mothers seek treatment for depression or anxiety can affect the development of the brain of babies.

The findings, however, underline how important it is, during pregnancy, to concentrate both on mental and physical health, says David Bridgett, a psychologists who was not involved in the study, at Northern Illinois University in “Dekalb”.

“Anyone can have highly efficient psychotherapy and counseling to relieve depression and anxiety which may help to mitigate the risks facing children,” Bridgett said by email. “There can be just as effective therapy or behavioral therapy for depression and anxiety as medicine.” Like many other drugs during pregnancy antidepressants enter a gray area with not enough data that confirms the risks and benefits definitively. Doctors can often reserve medications for people with severe depression.

“While data suggest that some drugs for depression and anxiety are relatively safe for pregnant women, research also indicates that those drugs that affect the development of children,” added Bridgett.

The current study indicates that mood disorders need to be dealt with during pregnancy, said Erika Forbes, a scientist who was not part of the study at the University of Pittsburgh.

Shift in brain growth does not inherently impair cognition, actions or emotion over long periods,’ Forbes said by fax.

“Maybe they won’t make sense and they’re just one factor,” said Forbes. “But it could raise the susceptibility of some children to serious problems.”


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Published by Neha

Having question on Pregnancy,Birth and Babies Health ? Ask us. Improving the quality of maternal, newborn and child health care meetings on accountability and quality of care learning. Maternal health is women’s health during pregnancy, infancy, and postpartum. It covers the dimensions of health care in family planning, preconception, prenatal and postnatal care to guarantee a favorable and satisfying experience

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