Topical Area: Maternal, Perinatal and Pediatric Nutrition
Objectives : Breastfeeding and mode of delivery can greatly affect a mother’s bond to her infant. Many women experience postpartum depression after giving birth. Breastfeeding status and the experience of either a cesarean or a vaginal birth can help us to understand postpartum depression even further. The objectives of this study were to investigate the associations of breastfeeding status with postpartum depression. The study also investigated how their special dietary status was likely to affect the risk of postpartum depression.
Data came from five two-year cycles (2007-2008, 2009-2010, 2011-2012, 2013-2014, and 2014-2015) of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), and the study used the multivariate regression models to test if mothers or those with special diets were more likely to experience postpartum depression depending on their breastfeeding and mode of delivery.
Results : The study found a positive association between breastfeeding status and depression, and that is, mothers who breastfed their child were at higher risk of postpartum depression. In addition, the study also found a negative association between caesarean deliveries and postpartum depression, so mothers with a cesarean delivery were at lower risk of postpartum depression compared to those with a vaginal delivery. In addition, mothers who were on any kind of special diet, either for weight loss or for other health-related reasons seemed to be at higher risk of postpartum depression.
While breastfeeding is positively associated with postpartum depression, it is essential for the health of the infant and for the mother and should be encouraged. There are many more vaginal deliveries than cesarean deliveries, but the amount of cesarean deliveries are increasing. With the higher complications that can occur during cesarean deliveries, vaginal deliveries are recommended for mother’s health until further action needs to be taken and a cesarean delivery becomes necessary. Although breastfeeding and vaginal deliveries are likely to affect the risk of postpartum depression, they are both still encouraged due to the health benefits and the decreased risk of complications.
Funding Sources : N/A