Can family-based interventions prevent young people from starting to smoke?

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Sally Adams summarises a recent Cochrane systematic review on family-based interventions for preventing smoking by children and adolescents, which shows the evidence is strongest for high intensity, family-based interventions that are independent of school-based programmes.

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Parent Infant Psychotherapy: a gap in the evidence

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Paul Ramchandani assesses the latest Cochrane review on Parent Infant Psychotherapy for improving parental and infant mental health, which finds little evidence to support the claim that PIP is an evidence-based treatment.

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Peer support for perinatal mental illness: what makes a peer?

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Lucy Simons reports on a meta-ethnography that explores what facilitates peer support for perinatal mental illness. Her key finding from appraising the review is that women who experience perinatal mental illness need support from the right sort of peer (i.e. women who have had mental distress in the context of motherhood) to make the relationship beneficial and to aid recovery.

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Antidepressants for depression in pregnancy: new systematic review says the jury’s still out

Nikki Newhouse summarises a recent US health technology assessment of antidepressants for depression in pregnancy and the postpartum period, which concludes that the evidence remains inconclusive about the benefits and harms of antidepressants for depression in pregnancy.

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Children of older fathers have an increased risk of psychiatric and academic problems, says new cohort study

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Research suggests that the risk of developing psychiatric problems (such as autism spectrum disorder, intellectual disability or schizophrenia) may be linked to increased paternal age at the time of conception. This seems quite plausible given that advancing age in men is associated with increased genetic mutations in sperm. However, studies so far have generally not [read the full story…]

Maternal depression may be associated with offspring obesity, according to systematic review

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Maternal depression is a serious mental health condition and does not only affect the mental health of the mother, but also the physical health of her children. One meta-analysis found that up to 19% of women in developed countries experienced an episode of depression in the 3-month prenatal period (Gavin et al., 2005). More specifically, [read the full story…]

Systematic review identifies key parenting factors associated with adolescent depression and anxiety

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Parenting is a tough gig. As a mum of three, I can honestly say that nothing in my everyday professional life comes close to the trials and tribulations of guiding small people through toddlerhood and beyond. Parenting advice comes thick and fast from all corners, most of it unsolicited, some of it anecdotal, much of [read the full story…]

Treating antenatal depression could prevent offspring adult depression

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Depression in late adolescence is a major public health concern, not least because it is strongly predictive of persistent, adult depression, which can have a severe effect on socioemotional functioning, education and employment. Increasingly, depression research is turning its attention to the matter of prevention of depression rather than exclusively focusing on treatment options and [read the full story…]

Cohort study links early exposure to intimate partner violence with poor mental health outcomes, but longer follow-up is needed

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Negative childhood experiences have always been a big topic in psychology and psychiatry, as they tend to be associated with poor mental health outcomes in later life. Intimate partner violence (IPV) harms not only the adults directly involved in it, but also the children – witnessing IPV as a child is a known risk factor [read the full story…]