New dads may face a higher risk for depression following the birth of their child, new research suggests. The finding published in the journal Pediatrics suggests that men are not immune to a form of post-partum depression long recognized among new mothers.
A nationwide investigation launched in 1994 tracked and surveyed more than 10,000 men for signs of depression, as they aged from adolescence into adulthood. By the end of the 23-year study period, about 2/3 had remained childless while about 1/3 had become dads. The vast majority of dads ended up living together with their child. And among this group, signs of depression actually tended to fall off in the period leading up to fatherhood.
However, depression risk among live-in dads started to go back up following birth ultimately rising an average of 68% during the first 5 years of their child’s life.
The study authors call for more focus on depression risk among dads in order to help optimize the health of fathers and their relationships with loved ones.
I’m Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with the news doctors are reading health news for healthier living.