Postpartum Depression Most Common In Cities

Women living in Canadian urban centers were at higher risk for postpartum depression than other populations.

Researchers discovered through postpartum depression statistics that Canadian women living in areas with populations higher than 500,000 people were more likely to suffer from depression after giving birth, a Canadian Medical Association press release reported.

Researchers studied data from 621 people living in different parts of Canada who participated in the 2006 Canadian Maternity Experiences Survey.

“We found that Canadian women who lived in large urban areas…were at higher risk of postpartum depression than women living in other areas,” Dr. Simone Vigod, psychiatrist at Women’s College Hospital and scientist at Women’s College Research Institute, Toronto, wrote with coauthors.

“The risk factors for postpartum depression (including history of depression, social support and immigration status) that were unequally distributed across geographic regions accounted for most of the variance in the rates of postpartum depression,” the team wrote.

The sample group had a postpartum depression rate of about 7.5 percent. Women living in rural areas suffered from the post-baby depression 10 percent of the time, women in rural areas were at six percent, 7 percent of semirural women, and five percent of women living in suburban areas experienced the depression.

“Supports and services targeted toward increasing connections for isolated women in large urban centers may need to be increased in Canada,” the authors said. “Considering the substantial negative effect of postpartum depression, such interventions could have broad-reaching social and public health impact.”

Symptoms of postpartum depression include: difficulty bonding with a new baby, feelings of shame or guilt, lower libido, antisocial behavior, thoughts of harming one’s self or the baby, insomnia, mood swings, loss of appetite, anger, and fatigue, Mayo Clinic reported.

Women suffering from these symptoms should see a doctor if the effects last for over two weeks, get worse, or interfere with daily life and the ability to take care of the child.

Those suffering from unmanageable cases of postpartum depression are often prescribed a combination of antipsychotics, antidepressants, and electroconvulsive therapy.