Fathers who embark on their child’s first year would have better mental health, the study says

Sometimes there are studies that make us wonder if it’s really useful. Or if they’re just a matter of common sense! A recent study by psychologists at California State University in Long Beach found that fathers who played a “real role” in the first year of child would have better mental health!

Postpartum depression affects not only mothers, but also fathers. And those who couldn’t take care of their baby because of the circumstances (difficult separation, work) would have a higher rate of depression than others! Explanations.

Of the importance of the father

This study, published in the journal Frontiers of Psychiatry, was conducted on 881 fathers of age, ethnicity, and “low income”. Some were separated from their mothers, some were married, and some were in a couple, but in a relationship under common law.

To conduct the study, psychologists rated fathers’ self-confidence at birth, after 6 months, and then after a year. These tests were offered in the form of multiple choice questions or a scale for assessing postpartum depression. These questionnaires were linked to the level of parental trust the fathers felt.

The father’s involvement in the first year of the child is understood through physical presence, but also through specific measures such as changing diapers. Photo credit: Shutterstock / Halfpoint

“In general, I think there are two big things to remember. First, engaging with your child is not only better for them, but also for the father. This is how fathers get involved early and often with their children! »Explains the psychologist Olajide Noah Bamishigbin on the PsyPost website.

The father’s involvement in the first year of the child is understood as the physical presence of the baby. But also through the specific measures that the father can take with the child (changing diapers, providing childcare equipment, etc.).

The results

The results of this study show that fathers who get involved in their child’s first year are more psychologically stable than others. And according to the researchers, this is partly due to the parental trust that fathers have in one another. But also to what is granted to them in the family. Psychologist Olajide Bamishigbin Jr. believes that in certain ethnic minorities, the place of fathers is not well defined. And that it causes postpartum depression in fathers!

“Fathers are important members of the family unit and their physical and mental health deserves as much attention as maternal health.” A recently published study examines how early care for infants affects fathers’ mental health. @jidebam https://t.co/L0QhNBo2lL

– Action for children (@ Act4Kidz) March 3, 2021

This research would be the first to examine the relationship between parenthood and depressive symptoms. And it was specifically done so that the interveners understand that paternal depression exists … that it is a serious problem that should not be put aside! In France, paternity leave has only existed since January 1, 2002. And it will last from 14 to 28 days from July 1, 2021.

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