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Maternal Mental Health

Call for Papers

New Content ItemIt is estimated that up to 1 in 4 women are affected by clinically significant perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, and many more experience less-severe symptoms of poor mental health.  If not addressed, these symptoms and disorders may cause lasting harm to mothers, babies, and families.

BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth has launched this collection to focus on research about maternal mental health and mood during the perinatal period - from pregnancy through 12 months postpartum.  This includes depression and depressive symptoms, anxiety and anxiety symptoms, post-traumatic stress disorder, self-harm, isolation and loneliness, and stigma about mental illness and seeking healthcare for it.

The collection welcomes quantitative and qualitative research about pregnancy- and postpartum-specific mood and anxiety disorders and symptoms among women, as well as research about the effect of pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum period on previously diagnosed disorders.  The collection also considers research on the interaction between physical symptoms during pregnancy, such as diabetes or sleep disruptions, and maternal mental health.

Articles will undergo the journal’s standard peer-review process overseen by our Guest Editors Dr. Maggie Redshaw and Dr. Karen Wynter.

Before submitting your manuscript, please ensure you have carefully read the submission guidelines for BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth.

Data sets and descriptions relevant to the collection will be considered in BMC Research Notes as Data Notes. You can find out more about this article type here. This type of content will be published in BMC Research Notes and included in the final collection.

We will be accepting submissions to this Collection through Oct. 31, 2021.

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  1. A woman’s vulnerability to sleep disruption and mood disturbance is heightened during the perinatal period and there is a strong bidirectional relationship between them. Both sleep disruption and mood disturba...

    Authors: Clare Ladyman, Bronwyn Sweeney, Katherine Sharkey, Bei Bei, Tanya Wright, Hannah Mooney, Mark Huthwaite, Chris Cunningham, Ridvan Firestone and T. Leigh Signal
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:659
  2. Self-care behaviors during pregnancy significantly impacts mother and children's health. This study aimed to explore the self-care behaviors and the associations of these behaviors with the psychological well-...

    Authors: Lam Duc Nguyen, Long Hoang Nguyen, Ly Thi Ninh, Ha Thu Thi Nguyen, Anh Duy Nguyen, Linh Gia Vu, Hao Si Anh Nguyen, Son Hoang Nguyen, Linh Phuong Doan, Thuc Minh Thi Vu, Bach Xuan Tran, Carl A. Latkin, Cyrus S. H. Ho and Roger C. M. Ho
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:631
  3. Rates of perinatal mental health difficulties (experienced during pregnancy and the 12-months postpartum) increased worldwide during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the UK, anxiety and depression were estimated to a...

    Authors: Katie Jones, Virginia Harrison, Michelle L. Moulds and Lisa Lazard
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:572
  4. It is worthwhile to identify women at risk of developing postpartum depression during pregnancy. This study aimed to determine the optimal time and cutoff score for antenatal screening for prediction of postpa...

    Authors: Akiko Tanuma-Takahashi, Tomohiro Tanemoto, Chie Nagata, Ryo Yokomizo, Akiko Konishi, Kenji Takehara, Tetsuo Ishikawa, Nozomu Yanaihara, Osamu Samura and Aikou Okamoto
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:527
  5. Prenatal posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is often overlooked in obstetric care, despite evidence that untreated PTSD negatively impacts both mother and baby. OB-GYN clinics commonly screen for depression ...

    Authors: Avelina C. Padin, Natalie R. Stevens, Mandy L. Che, Ihuoma N. Erondu, Marisa J. Perera and Madeleine U. Shalowitz
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:487
  6. There are very few developed countries where physical isolation and low community transmission has been reported for COVID-19 but this has been the experience of Australia. The impact of physical isolation co...

    Authors: Vicki L. Clifton, Sailesh Kumar, Danielle Borg, Kym M. Rae, Roslyn N. Boyd, Koa Whittingham, Karen M. Moritz, Hannah E. Carter, Steven M. McPhail, Brenda Gannon, Robert Ware, Barnaby J. W. Dixson, Samudragupta Bora and Cameron Hurst
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:468
  7. Yazidi survivors of a 2014 genocidal attack by the self-proclaimed Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) have complex medical and mental health needs in the perinatal and postpartum period. Few studies have a...

    Authors: Pegah AM Seidi, Nazdar Qudrat Abas, Dilshad Jaff, Raven Dunstan, Lein Soltan, Amanda Brumwell, Michael Wilson, Thomas Nicholson and Aunchalee E. L. Palmquist
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:359
  8. Mental health has long fallen behind physical health in attention, funding, and action—especially in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). It has been conspicuously absent from global reproductive, materna...

    Authors: Shanon E McNab, Sean L Dryer, Laura Fitzgerald, Patricia Gomez, Anam M. Bhatti, Edward Kenyi, Aleefia Somji, Neena Khadka and Suzanne Stalls
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:342
  9. Measuring positive and negative aspects of well-being during pregnancy and childbirth is important for both healthy women and women who are living with long-term health conditions (LTCs). This study aimed to f...

    Authors: Laura Kelly, Jennifer J. Kurinczuk, Ray Fitzpatrick and Fiona Alderdice
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:325

    The Correction to this article has been published in BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:403

  10. People using maternity services in the United Kingdom (UK) have faced significant changes brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing regulations. We focused on the experiences of pregnant women ...

    Authors: A. R. McKinlay, D. Fancourt and A. Burton
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:313
  11. Common perinatal mental disorders are the most frequent complications of pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period, and the prevalence among women in low- and middle-income countries is the highest at ne...

    Authors: Shanon McNab, Jane Fisher, Simone Honikman, Linos Muvhu, Rebecca Levine, Genesis Chorwe-Sungani, Sarah Bar-Zeev, Tedbabe Degefie Hailegebriel, Ifeyinwa Yusuf, Neerja Chowdhary, Atif Rahman, Paul Bolton, Claire-Helene Mershon, Mona Bormet, Diana Henry-Ernest, Anayda Portela…
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:308
  12. Prenatal anxiety is a common concern which may have adverse effects on maternal and infant health outcomes. Studies addressing needs-based education interventions for prenatal anxiety are limited.

    Authors: Quan Shen, Can-Ran Huang, Liu Rong, Shan Ju, Sharon R. Redding, Yan-Qiong Ouyang and Rong Wang
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:301
  13. Perinatal mental health (PMH) is a worldwide public health issue crossing cultural boundaries. However, the prevalence of PMH conditions vary considerably. These disparities stem in part from poor understandin...

    Authors: Nafisa Insan, Anthony Weke, Judith Rankin and Simon Forrest
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:293
  14. Antenatal anxiety has been linked to adverse obstetric outcomes, including miscarriage and preterm birth. However, most studies investigating anxiety during pregnancy, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic...

    Authors: Jerrine R. Morris, Eleni Jaswa, Amy Kaing, Eduardo Hariton, Miriam Andrusier, Katie Aliaga, Maya Davis, Marcelle I. Cedars and Heather G. Huddleston
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:272
  15. Pregnancy is an important time for women’s mental health and marks the foundations of the emerging bond between mother and baby. This study aimed to investigate the role of pregnancy acceptability and intended...

    Authors: Josephine McNamara, Alixandra Risi, Amy L. Bird, Michelle L. Townsend and Jane S. Herbert
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:267
  16. Pregnancy is a period for women undergo major physical and psychological changes. Suicide is a cause of maternal death and suicidal ideation is a key factor in suicidal behavior. The purpose of this study was ...

    Authors: Ling Zhang, Yating Yang, Mengdie Li, Xiaoqin Zhou, Kai Zhang, Xuai Yin and Huanzhong Liu
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:266
  17. Pregnancy nausea and vomiting (NVP) are associated with a wide range of physical and mental changes in the mothers and could affect their adaptation to pregnancy. There is a gap of knowledge regarding the effe...

    Authors: Mina Abbasi, Azam Maleki, Loghman Ebrahimi and Behnaz Molaei
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:259
  18. Maternal mental health problems in each of the prenatal period and postnatal period have been demonstrated as possible risk factors for atopic dermatitis (AD) in children. However, the cumulative impacts of ma...

    Authors: Chikana Kawaguchi, Keiko Murakami, Mami Ishikuro, Fumihiko Ueno, Aoi Noda, Tomomi Onuma, Fumiko Matsuzaki, Hirohito Metoki, Shinichi Kuriyama and Taku Obara
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:242
  19. Antepartum depression is the most common mental health disorder in pregnancy and it is also a risk factor for adverse perinatal outcomes. Low and middle income countries like Nigeria bear a higher burden of an...

    Authors: Ikeola A. Adeoye, Abiodun Sogbesan and Oluyomi Esan
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:219
  20. Prevalence of perinatal depression is high in Rwanda and has been found to be associated with the quality of relationship with partner. This study extends this work to examine the relationship between antenata...

    Authors: Marie Providence Umuziga, Darius Gishoma, Michaela Hynie and Laetitia Nyirazinyoye
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:193
  21. The COVID-19 social restrictions have increased the risk for depression compared to the previous period in Italian women with Low-Risk Pregnancy (LRP). lLess is known about the impact of COVID-19 restrictions ...

    Authors: Martina Smorti, Angelo Gemignani, Lucia Bonassi, Giulia Mauri, Alessia Carducci and Chiara Ionio
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:191
  22. Antenatal depression (AD) is common in pregnant women and is associated with adverse outcomes for the mother, fetus, infant and child. The influencing factors of AD among pregnant women have been studied; howe...

    Authors: Zhonglan Chen, Youping Li, Juan Chen and Xiujing Guo
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:188
  23. Identifying women with perinatal anxiety is important in order to provide timely support and prevent adverse outcomes. Self-report instruments are commonly used in maternity settings. An alternative is to ask ...

    Authors: Gracia Fellmeth, Siân Harrison, Jenny McNeill, Fiona Lynn, Maggie Redshaw and Fiona Alderdice
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:180
  24. Although some women experience anger as a mood problem after childbirth, postpartum anger has been neglected by researchers. Mothers’ and infants’ poor sleep quality during the postpartum period has been assoc...

    Authors: Christine HK Ou, Wendy A. Hall, Paddy Rodney and Robyn Stremler
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:163
  25. Studies report heightened risks of mental health problems among women who experience an unintended pregnancy, but few consider the complexity of pregnancy intentions. In this study, we evaluate how different d...

    Authors: Caroline Moreau, Camille Bonnet, Maxime Beuzelin and Béatrice Blondel
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:162
  26. Peripartum depression in and after pregnancy are common, reported by 11.9% of women worldwide, and the proportion was even higher during the outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We aimed to investi...

    Authors: Manji Hu, Yongjie Zhou, Mei Xue, Yali Ren, Shen Li, Ruoxi Wang, Ling Qi, Lingyun Zeng, Zhengkui Liu, Wei Qian, Jiezhi Yang, Xin Zhou, Lijuan Chen and Xiangyang Zhang
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:114
  27. Mental health is an integral part of overall health. Mental health disorders following childbirth are common and poor maternal mental health has consequences for both the mother and her infant. Preeclampsia is...

    Authors: Lynne Roberts, Amanda Henry, Samuel B. Harvey, Caroline S. E. Homer and Gregory K. Davis
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:108
  28. Pregnancy has been shown to be times in a woman’s life particularly prone to mental health issues, however a substantial percentage of mothers report subclinical perinatal mental health symptoms that go undete...

    Authors: Maria Laura Filippetti, Alasdair D. F. Clarke and Silvia Rigato
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:68
  29. Numerous studies suggest that interpersonal relationships and social support influence the development of postpartum depression and sleep quality for women. However, the effect of support from the husband or t...

    Authors: Weijing Qi, Yan Liu, Huicong Lv, Jun Ge, Yucui Meng, Nan Zhao, Fuqing Zhao, Qing Guo and Jie Hu
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:65
  30. The success of antiretroviral therapy has normalized pregnancy among women living with HIV (WWH) with a very low risk of perinatal transmission of HIV. Despite these advances, WWH still face complex medical an...

    Authors: Ellen Moseholm, Inka Aho, Åsa Mellgren, Gitte Pedersen, Terese L. Katzenstein, Isik S. Johansen, Diana Bach, Merete Storgaard and Nina Weis
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:20
  31. Women and men having been exposed to childhood trauma would be at high risk of various mental health symptoms while awaiting a child. This study aimed to evaluate the association between cumulative childhood t...

    Authors: Julia Garon-Bissonnette, Marie-Ève Grisé Bolduc, Roxanne Lemieux and Nicolas Berthelot
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2022 22:10
  32. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has recently become the most important issue in the world. Very few reports in Japan have examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on peripartum mental heal...

    Authors: Youji Takubo, Naohisa Tsujino, Yuri Aikawa, Kazuyo Fukiya, Momoko Iwai, Takashi Uchino, Megumu Ito, Yasuo Akiba, Masafumi Mizuno and Takahiro Nemoto
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:845
  33. The COVID-19 pandemic poses an unprecedented risk to the global population. Maternity care in the UK was subject to many iterations of guidance on how best to reconfigure services to keep women, their families...

    Authors: Sergio A. Silverio, Abigail Easter, Claire Storey, Davor Jurković and Jane Sandall
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:840
  34. The early postpartum period is recognized cross-culturally as being important for recovery, with new parents receiving increased levels of community support. However, COVID-19-related lockdown measures may hav...

    Authors: Theresa E. Gildner, Glorieuse Uwizeye, Rebecca L. Milner, Grace C. Alston and Zaneta M. Thayer
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:828
  35. Postpartum depression affects a significant proportion of women of childbearing age. The birth of a newborn baby is normally considered a joyful event, inhibiting mothers from expressing their depressive feeli...

    Authors: Catherine Atuhaire, Godfrey Zari Rukundo, Laura Brennaman, Samuel Nambile Cumber and Grace Nambozi
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:826
  36. The perinatal period, from pregnancy to the first year postpartum, is a transitional period that can result in anxiety and stress for some women. Perinatal anxiety and stress can adversely impact the physical ...

    Authors: Megan McCarthy, Catherine Houghton and Karen Matvienko-Sikar
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:811
  37. Infant crying may cause concerns among new parents and is a frequent reason for seeking help from their general practitioner (GP). The etiology of crying problems in infancy is not fully understood, but recent...

    Authors: Tabitha Krogh Ölmestig, Volkert Siersma, Anna Rubach Birkmose, Jakob Kragstrup and Ruth Kirk Ertmann
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:777
  38. Up to 50% of women in areas of high socio-economic deprivation are at risk of developing depressive symptoms in pregnancy. Feeling well supported, can facilitate good mental health perinatally. A brief, innova...

    Authors: Pauline Slade, Melanie Dembinsky, Katie Bristow, Kim Garthwaite, Amy Mahdi, Annette James, Atif Rahman and Soo Downe
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:769
  39. Treating depression early in pregnancy can improve health outcomes for women and their children. Current low-intensity psychological therapy for perinatal depression is a supported self-help approach informed ...

    Authors: Jenny Ingram, Debbie Johnson, Heather A. O’Mahen, Roslyn Law, Iryna Culpin, David Kessler, Lucy Beasant and Jonathan Evans
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:765
  40. There is a high prevalence of antenatal depression in low-or-middle-income countries, but information about risk factors in these settings is still lacking. The purpose of this study is to measure the prevalen...

    Authors: Sage Wyatt, Truls Ostbye, Vijitha De Silva, Prabodha Lakmali and Qian Long
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:758
  41. Prenatal diagnosis of fetal abnormalities is a critical and stressful event for women. Most pregnant women are concerned about fetal abnormalities and screening tests. Due to the importance of anxiety reductio...

    Authors: Arezoo Bayat, Leila Amiri-Farahani, Mehdi Soleimani, Nooshin Eshraghi and Shima Haghani
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:757
  42. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) usually follows a catastrophic event. However, the experience of child birth can be severe enough to cause PTSD in some women. The aim of this study is to highlight the pr...

    Authors: Wedisha Imal Gankanda, Ileperuma Arachchige Gayani Malsha Perera Gunathilake, Nalaka Lasantha Kahawala and Augustus Keshala Probhodana Ranaweera
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:626
  43. COVID-19 has placed additional stressors on mothers during an already vulnerable lifecourse transition. Initial social distancing restrictions (Timepoint 1; T1) and initial changes to those social distancing r...

    Authors: Leanne Jackson, Leonardo De Pascalis, Joanne A. Harrold, Victoria Fallon and Sergio A. Silverio
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:625
  44. Perinatal depression is of substantial public health importance in low and middle income countries. The study aimed to evaluate the impact of a mental health intervention delivered by non-specialist health wor...

    Authors: Juliet E. M. Nakku, Oliva Nalwadda, Emily Garman, Simone Honikman, Charlotte Hanlon, Fred Kigozi and Crick Lund
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:584
  45. Antenatal women experience an increased level of mood and anxiety symptoms, which have negative effects on mothers’ mental and physical health as well as the health of their newborns. The relation of maternal ...

    Authors: Hua Li, Angela Bowen, Rudy Bowen, Nazeem Muhajarine and Lloyd Balbuena
    Citation: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2021 21:583

Dr Maggie Redshaw
New Content ItemDr. Redshaw is a Research Psychologist, most recently working in the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit in the University of Oxford. She has published over 200 papers and reports on neonatal care, developmental outcomes, maternity care and the experience for women from many different groups and psychological issues, particularly those relating to perinatal mental health.


Dr Karen Wynter
New Content ItemDr Wynter is a perinatal researcher with a special interest in mental health, sleep, family functioning and health service use among expectant and new parents. She is a member of the International Marcé Society for Perinatal Mental Health, and Executive Secretary of the Australasian branch. She is internationally recognised for her research among fathers.