If a baby is breastfed, can this have any impact on depression in adulthood?
Major depression is a disease with certain characteristic signs and symptoms that can interfere with the ability to work, sleep, eat, and enjoy pleasurable activities. Disabling episodes of major depression can occur once or a number of times during a lifetime.
A recent study has suggested that a history of not being breastfed may be associated with a higher risk of subsequent major depression in adulthood.1 In this study of 52 female and male adults with a diagnosis of major depression, there were 106 healthy controls who never suffered depression. The authors found that 72% (61 of 84) subjects that had never reported depression were breastfed. While less than half (45.8% - 22 of 48) of the patients with depression had been breastfed.
Many of my pregnant clients are really into exercise. As they are getting closer to delivery, they are starting to be concerned that exercise may cause preterm births? What do you think? Is it safe to exercise right up to delivery?
Dear Curious LC,
Current medical practice recommends that pregnant women should most assuredly engage in some sort of exercise regimen while pregnant. Yet what is the effect of exercise on pregnancy? Exercising during pregnancy is good for the mother; there is no doubt about it. Pregnant women who exercise tend to have reduced risk of obesity, gestational diabetes, hypertension, and preeclampsia. However, the effects on the fetus are unclear.1,2
A baby in my practice recently died from SIDS. The parents are devastated. They were formula feeding the baby and are wondering if breastfeeding might have prevented the death. Do you have any scientific information on this that I can share with the parents?
Dear Sad LC,
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the unexplained death of a seemingly healthy baby, usually during sleep. It is also called as crib death. It is the leading cause of postneonatal death in developed countries and the eighth leading cause of years of potential life lost.
One of my breastfeeding mothers recently came down with a Cyclospora infection. What causes it and is the medication used to treat it okay to take if you are breastfeeding?
Dear Worried LC,
Recently in the USA 378 laboratory-confirmed cases of Cyclospora infection have been reported to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. Reports are from the health departments of 16 different states. Most cases were reported in Iowa, Texas, and Nebraska.
Cyclospora Cayetanensis is a small parasite that causes an intestinal infection called Cyclosporiasis. Infection occurs following the ingestion of contaminated food or water. The states of Iowa and Nebraska have announced that their analysis indicates that the outbreak in those states is linked to salad mix.
I know you do research on breastfeeding mothers taking drugs. Are you doing any research projects right now? What type of moms are you looking for? What will the mom have to do if she agrees to help with the research?
Wants to Help LC
Dear Wants to Help,
I'm currently collecting samples from breastfeeding mothers taking the following drugs:
• Anti cholesterol drugs (Lipitor, Crestor, Simvastatin)
Summer is here and my pregnant and breastfeeding moms want to know if it is okay to use sunscreen. Does the skin absorb sunscreen? Is it safe for fetuses and breastfeeding babies?
Dear Curious LC,
Sunscreen is safe to use during pregnancy, and it is actually recommended for all women exposed to direct sunlight for more than 20 minutes a day. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends for pregnant women to protect their skins from the sun by wearing sunscreen with SPF (sun protection factor) of 15 or more.
Also, approximately 70% of pregnant women develop chloasma or “ mask of pregnancy,” which is characterized by dark brown areas around the eyes, nose, and cheeks. In these women, sun exposure will darken these marks. Aside from sunscreen, it is recommended to wear a wide brimmed hat when out in the sun.1
I am working with a pregnant mother in her third trimester. Her doctor wants her to have a TDap vaccine. Is it safe?
Dear Worried LC,
There are two forms of the tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis vaccines. The DTap vaccine is administered to infants and children 6 years and younger. The TDap vaccine is administered to children 6 years and older, adolescents and adults.
I have eczema and just found out I am pregnant. I’ve heard that taking probiotics while pregnant and breastfeeding can prevent eczema in children. What is the latest information on this?
Dear Worried Mom,
Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is the term broadly applied to a range of persistent skin conditions, which include dryness and recurring skin rashes characterized by: redness, skin edema (swelling), itching, crusting, flaking, blistering, cracking, oozing, bleeding, and areas of temporary skin discoloration. Eczema is a common condition in children. In 2003 in the U.S., 10.7% of children were reported to have a diagnosis of eczema.1 A recent study has suggested that use of probiotics in pregnancy and breastfeeding may reduce the risk of eczema in infants.2