Maternal depression may affect babies’ sleep

Jun 10 08:13 2010 Edward Laing Print This Article


pzizz is a powerful new kind of insomnia treatment that’s perfect for you if you have the kind of sleep problems where you can’t switch off when in bed. It will help to quiet your mind, and gently ease you into restful sleep.

Pregnant women with depression commonly give birth to babies with sleep problems and have higher risk of depression during childhood. If these mothers are not treated,Guest Posting they tend to give less prenatal care, have a decline in appetite, and disregard rest. This will make them at risk of having a miscarriage, giving their baby a low birth weight, or delivering their baby at preterm.

Without treatment, this depression can end up in postpartum depression which can last for months subsequent to giving birth and affects the mother’s bond with the baby.

Babies who have depressed mothers sleep in shorter time, take a while to fall asleep, and sound less than those with mothers who are not in depression. They tend to sleep more frequently but at shorter lengths during the day.

The signs of depression

Depression is not likely to appear all of a sudden. It usually crawls in slowly and there are different symptoms for different people.  The common signs are change in appetite, lack of energy, and giving little interest in things she used to enjoy. There could also be change in sleep patterns, feeling of hopelessness, and crying with no reasonable basis.

Women with depression generally have difficulty in caring for their infant to the extent that they do not want to spend time with him or her.

How could maternal depression affect babies’ sleep?

In past studies, it was found that the cortisol level is increased during and after pregnancy in depressed women. Cortisol is a hormone that is linked to stress. This indicates it is possible that the hormone level of the mother would influence the baby’s sleep.

But the exact cause of infant’s sleep trouble is not yet determined. It could be hormonal, genetic, or even both. Babies’ sleep problems and depression could still be modified since brain activity is still very malleable during childhood.

Past studies

A researcher, named Armitage, conducted a study including two sets of mothers and their infants. The first set had no recorded or present depression. The second group of mothers had previously sought help for depression at the U-M Depression Center. Both were given devices measuring sleep periods, daytime activity, and light exposure.

The results showed that babies of mothers with depression had considerably more sleeping problems than low-risk infants. The high-risk babies slept more during the day, woke up frequently, and took two hours to sleep at night.

Help your baby sleep well

Infants, including toddlers, need naps during the day. Newborns should have 11 to 18 hours in the first and second months. In the next 10 months, they should get 11 to 15 hours of sleep. When newborns wake up during nighttime, it is commonly because they need food.

Doing routines before bedtime helps babies spot the difference between night sleep and day naps. You could dress you baby in different clothes for day and for night sleeps. Make sure that you baby are normally around bright light during the day. This helps him or her establish circadian rhythms according to light cycles. Of course, protect your baby’s eyes from direct sunlight and should be shielded with sunscreen when outside.

Source: Free Guest Posting Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

About Article Author

Edward  Laing
Edward Laing

Pzizz is a powerful new kind of insomnia treatment that’s perfect for you if you have the kind of sleep problems where you can’t switch off when in bed. It will help to quiet your mind, and gently ease you into restful sleep.

Start enjoying the benefits of proper rest and sleep, naturally! Pzizz can show you.


To view full article please visit: http://www.pzizz.com/insomnia/effects-of-sleep-problems/maternal-depression-may-affect-babies-sleep

View More Articles