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COVID-19 saw spike in new mothers seeking help with mental health

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Mental health consultations among new mothers were 30% higher during the COVID-19 pandemic than before it, particularly during the first three months after birth, suggests Canadian research.

Study authors noted that postpartum mental illness, including postnatal depression, usually affected as many as one in five mothers and could have long-term effects on children and families if it becomes chronic.

They looked at mental health consultations by 137,609 people in Ontario during the postpartum period – from date of birth to 365 days later – from March to November 2020.

They found mental health visits to both primary care and psychiatrists were higher than before the pandemic, especially among those with anxiety, depression, and alcohol or substance use disorders.

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Source: The Nursing Times, 7 June 2021

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