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Maternal Postpartum Depression Effects on Child's Health

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  • Lucia Schiavon

Abstract

Several studies indicate that children, whose mother experienced postpartum depression, are at greater risks of emotional, behavioural, cognitive and interpersonal problems later in life. However, maternal postpartum depression might influence child’s development by affecting his health outcomes. Using data from the Millennium Cohort Study (UK data service), we investigate whether maternal postpartum depression has any impact on early child health development and if differences exist when the child is the first-born. In detail, we study the effects of maternal postpartum depression on a range of potential child health diseases at ages of 3, 5, 7 and 11 years and on the number of injuries or accidents occurred at the child, for which he was taken to the hospital. Our findings show a non-negligible impact of maternal postpartum depression for first-born children on those health issues enhanced by a stressful environment: wheezing (throughout childhood) and hay fever (at early ages). At later ages (7 and 11 years), children with a mother who experienced postpartum depression are also more likely to suffer from asthma. Furthermore, results indicate a significant strong effect of maternal postpartum depression on the accident rate at the ages of 3 and 5 years (the incidence-rate ratios are of 1.205 and 1.289 respectively).

Suggested Citation

  • Lucia Schiavon, 2020. "Maternal Postpartum Depression Effects on Child's Health," CHILD Working Papers Series 83 JEL Classification: I1, Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic Economics (CHILD) - CCA.
  • Handle: RePEc:cca:wchild:83
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    Keywords

    maternal postpartum depression; early childhood development; children health.;
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