Postpartum depression and exercise


Postpartum depression is a global mental health issue, annually affecting 13 million women worldwide. There can be reluctance from postnatal women to take antidepressants, particularly if they are breastfeeding. It can also be difficult for patients to access psychological therapies, such as cognitive behaviour therapy. A recent systematic review and meta-analysis of international research on postpartum depression showed aerobic exercise to be an effective management option and a potential preventative intervention more generally in postpartum women.

Blamey, R. V., Daley, A. J., & Jolly, K. (2017). Does aerobic exercise reduce postpartum depressive symptoms? a systematic review and meta-analysis. British Journal of General Practice. 67(663): e684–e691. doi: 10.3399/bjgp17X692525

Conclusion: Aerobic exercise can help women who are experiencing postpartum depression.
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