This study examined the relationship between prepregnancy depression and breastfeeding duration by maternal age.
Researchers analyzed data from Phase 7 of the Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System. Pre Pregnancy depression was dichotomized, while breastfeeding duration was categorized as never breastfed, breastfed eight weeks or less, and breastfed more than eight weeks. Maternal age was a significant effect modifier; therefore, results were stratified by maternal age. Multinomial logistic regression was used to obtain odds ratios and 95% CI.
For women aged 20-24, 25-29, and 30-34 years with pre-pregnancy depression, the odds of never breastfeeding and breastfeeding eight weeks or less were significantly higher than in women with no history of prepregnancy depression. Notably, among women aged 25-29 with pre-pregnancy depression, the odds of never breastfeeding and breastfeeding eight weeks or less were 93% and 65% higher than women with no history of prepregnancy depression, respectively.
They have a history of poor mental health before pregnancy may increase the likelihood of premature breastfeeding cessation. Practitioners should consider a woman’s mental health status before pregnancy in reproductive and prenatal care models. Efforts should be made to understand the challenges women of specific age groups face when trying to breastfeed.