Pregnant women and new moms already have many issues in the perinatal period. With covid pandemic gripping the whole world, they are a higher risk of depression and anxiety, according to a new study.
The study published in Frontiers in Global Women’s Health has said that depression and anxiety has substantially increased during the covid 19 crisis. Dr. Margie Davenport of University of Alberta, Canada, said that physical and social isolation because of the pandemic had taken a toll on the physical and mental health of everyone, especially pregnant woman and new moms. Margie Davenport is the co author of the study.
The researchers said that anxiety and depression during pregnancy and postpartum can affect the physical and mental health of both the mother and the child. These can reduce the bond between the mother and the child.
The study was conducted in 900 women. Of this, 520 were pregnant and 380 had given birth. The researchers found that 29 per cent of women experienced moderate to high anxiety symptoms before the beginning of the pandemic. They also said that 15 per cent had depressive symptoms. However, these levels increased during the pandemic with 72 per cent experiencing anxiety and 41 per cent showing depression.
The researchers also looked into how the pandemic had affected the physical exercise. They found that 64 per cent reduced their physical activity since coronavirus pandemic began. Physical exercise is known to ease depression. The researchers also found that women who did about 150 minutes of physical activity had lower symptoms of depression and anxiety.