Emerging Risk Factors ID’d for Postpartum Depression

Mid section of a pregnant female lying in bed

“Emerging risk factors for postpartum depression include the serotonin transporter genotype and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid status, both of which may interact to affect risk, according to a review published in the November issue of The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry.”

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Too Many Women Continue to Die in Childbirth

“The United States can do better than dead last on maternal mortality in the developed world. We can show the way!”

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Why You Can’t Get a Baby’s Cry Out of Your Head (Even If You Don’t Have Children)


  • “"Researchers find the cry of a baby triggers emotional responses in the brain unlike any other sound – even in non-parents
  • Oxford University team found cry triggers brain’s emotional response in just 100 milliseconds”

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Why Children Develop Better if They Don’t Always Tell the Truth

can't keep a Secret

"It only takes one little white lie that works in order for the child to realize that he possesses something very precious: his own personality, identity, and privacy, to which not even his parents can get access," says Castro. Escaping punishment through lying or not telling the truth leads to freedom and defiance.”

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Giving Birth in Hospital Raises Risk of New Mothers Bleeding to Death


“Women who choose to give birth at home are less likely to suffer from life-threatening bleeding than those who have their baby in hospital, a study has found.”

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American Pregnancy Association – Home Birth

Woman’s Labor Shows Positives of Home Birth


“Editor’s note: Poughkeepsie Journal multimedia artist Chrissie Williams shares what led her to explore childbirth and inspired her yearlong video project into the lives of women who choose to give birth at home.”

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APPPAH Conference 2012 –New Frontiers in Birth Psychology

APPPAH 2012 Congress

The Association for Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health will host APPPAH’S 17th International Congress, to be held at the lovely Kabuki Hotel in San Francisco November 15-18. This year our theme is New Frontiers in Birth Psychology.

The executive planning committee, Jeane Rhodes, Ellynne Skove, Pat Martin, and Maureen Wolfe, is very excited with the lineup of speakers and presenters for this year’s event. Please check out the program-at-a-glance for a nice overview and click on the links provided to explore the details of the program. Here are a few highlights:

  • Pre-congress full-day workshops will feature Robbie Davis-Floyd, Suzanne Arms, Gerhard Schroth, Myrna Martin, and Dennis Hertenstein
  • Keynote speakers include Stan Grof, Peter Nathanielsz, Elan McAlister, Thomas Verny, Carista Luminare, and Michael Mendizza
  • Opening night will feature a presidents’ panel with William Emerson, David Chamberlain, Thomas Verny, and Barbara Findeisen
  • A new feature of this congress is 3-hour training sessions. Presenters include William Emerson, Barbara Harper, Rochele Hirsch, Karen Melton, Julie Gerland, and Myrna Martin.
  • 1-hour concurrent sessions will feature Ann Smith, Phyllis Florian, Jeanice Barcelo, Molly Arthur, Rita Kluny, Shawn Tassone, Kathryn Landherr, and Deb Puterbaugh.
  • Sunday morning will feature an International Panel with Rupert Linder, Eva Gundberg, and Julie Gerland.
  • Participants will actively engage in focus groups in a continuation of networking begun at the 2011 Congress. Check the schedule for group titles and moderator names.
  • Post congress half-day workshops will feature Phyllis Klaus, Ray Castellino, and Tony Madrid

The most important participant in this congress will be YOU, so, if you have not already registered do so now and take advantage of the early registration rates. We really want to see you there to renew old friendships and celebrate the start of new ones.

Please Click Here for more information or to Register for the APPPAH 2012 Conference.

Babies’ Non-Verbal Communication Skills Can Help Predict Outcomes in Children at High Risk of Developing Autism


“Babies’ non-verbal communication skills can help predict outcomes in children at high risk of developing autism October 1, 2012 in Autism spectrum disorders Approximately 19 percent of children with a sibling diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) will develop Autism due to shared genetic and environmental vulnerabilities, according to previous studies.”

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When Children’s Tantrums Indicate More Serious Issues


Aggressive tantrums, are unusual and could signal a larger problem.So, as a parent, how do you know if your children’s tantrums indicate mental illness?

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Postpartum Depression: What to Expect When the Unexpected Happens


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Psychologists Say New Definition of Autism in DSM-5 Will Not Exclude Most Children Diagnosed


Parents and psychologists have worried that a modern set of criteria for autism, to replace the subjective standard of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV), would make some children ineligible for psychiatric and medical care, but that is not the case, says a team of psychologists.

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Is Aggression Born or Bred?

HOW, when, where and why does aggressive behavior manifest?

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What Is Natural Childbirth?


For some first time moms, the idea of natural childbirth – delivering your baby vaginally without pain medication or medical intervention – is a scary thought. For others, it seems completely natural.

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Ultra-Brief ECT for the Treatment of Severe Postpartum Depression


This is a small case report but is an important one, demonstrating the effectiveness of ultra-brief electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) for the treatment of severe postpartum depression.  While most women with postpartum illness have mild to moderate illness, there are some women with severe depression that significantly impairs their ability to function and to care for their child.  Women with severe PPD are also at higher risk for suicide.


In this report, 3 women with severe postpartum depression, refractory to treatment with medication, were psychiatrically hospitalized. All three patients had significant suicidal ideation. They were treated with right unilateral ultra-brief ECT.  (Ultra-brief ECT consists of electrical pulses lasting less than 0.5 milliseconds and causes less memory impairment than ECT treatments with longer pulses.) All women began to respond within 3–6 treatments (within 1-2 weeks), and no significant cognitive side effects were observed.

Although ECT is rarely thought of as first line treatment, this report suggests its usefulness in the management of women with severe PPD.  For women with severe depression, psychiatric hospitalization may be necessary.  However, in the United States where mother-baby units are rare, hospitalization often necessitates a prolonged separation of the mother from her infant.  Medications typically take 2-4 weeks to start working, and sometimes the illness is refractory to treatment with medications.  This case series suggests that ECT is not only effective in this setting but also yields quick results.  

Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD

Levy Y, Austin MP, Halliday G.  Use of ultra-brief pulse electroconvulsive therapy to treat severe postnatal mood disorder.  Australas Psychiatry, 2012.

Read More:

Focht A, Kellner CH.  Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) in the treatment of postpartum psychosis.  J ECT. 2012 Mar;28(1):31-3. (Review)

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