A new study of over 10,000 mothers has shown that women who breastfed their babies were at significantly lower risk of postnatal depression than those who did not.
Rosemary Dodds, Senior Policy Adviser at NCT said:
“Mothers often experience pressures after the birth such as pain, shortage of sleep and anxiety. Breastfeeding can help to relax mothers and reduce stress, so it might play a part in preventing mental health issues developing. We welcome further research into this subject as perinatal mental health is a huge issue for many mothers. At least one in ten suffer with postnatal depression.
“For parents looking for practical and emotional support in all areas of parenthood and baby feeding, NCT runs a helpline, breastfeeding support groups and Baby cafes.”
NCT Helpline: 0300 330 0700.
Research link: Borra C, Iacovou M, Sevilla A. New Evidence on Breastfeeding and Postpartum Depression: The Importance of Understanding Women’s Intentions. Maternal and Child Health Journal. Published online August 2014