Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Treating Depressed Moms to Remission Helps Kids

Children of mothers whose depression remitted after treatment or other intervention had significantly fewer behavior problems than children whose mothers remained depressed, report researchers at Loyola University Maryland in Baltimore. They studied 60 low-income women with major depression and their children ages 4 to 11. The women were randomly assigned to receive either medication or cognitive-behavioral therapy or were referred to community services as a control.

Active treatment alone of mothers did not result in improvement in their children's behavior problems or adaptive skills, they said in the April Psychiatric Services. However, about 28% to 32% of the mothers achieved remission. Children of those mothers had significantly fewer behavior problems than children whose mothers remained depressed. “[More] research is needed on the long-term effects on families of treating mothers' depressive episodes to determine whether the benefits of remission persist,” concluded the authors.

For more about the diagnosis, and treatment of psychiatric illness during pregnancy and after giving birth, click here for Psychiatric News, and click here to see the American Psychiatric Publishing book Mood and Anxiety Disorders During Pregnancy and Postpartum.
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