A new study from the Australian Women’s Health Foundation has found that women who consume feminine products are more likely to experience post-partum depression and anxiety.
The study found that those who consumed feminine products were more likely than those who did not to report feeling depressed or anxious after giving birth, and more likely in the third trimester of pregnancy to experience pre-eclampsia, which is a condition where the body is unable to produce enough blood-clotting factors.
The results of the study, which was published in the journal The Lancet, indicate that while it may be difficult to predict the effect of feminine products on post-pregnancy symptoms, the evidence is still compelling.
The authors of the report argue that feminine products contain “an array of chemicals that may potentially interact with certain hormones to cause post-natal depression and/or anxiety”.
“It is not clear why these chemicals are more strongly associated with post-eClampsia and post-op anxiety, but it is possible that they may be more effective at inducing symptoms than the more common estrogen-based formulations, which can trigger symptoms in women with a higher body mass index (BMI),” they write.
“The presence of some of these compounds could also affect the levels of certain hormones, which may have a greater impact on the post-postnatal state than the estrogen-containing formulations.”
The study authors found that, while there were no statistically significant differences between the genders in terms of the prevalence of post-birth depression, post-operative anxiety and postoperative symptoms, those women who reported feeling depressed after giving their babies a breastfeed had a higher risk of having post-babies anxiety and pre-operative depression than those women with no pre-existing anxiety or depression symptoms.
“While these data may not be statistically significant, they are interesting nonetheless, and we would encourage clinicians to consider these findings in the context of the current evidence,” Dr Amy Kostecki, executive director of the Australian Breastfeeding Association, said in a statement.
“We need to be mindful of the fact that many women are taking their baby for a breast feed or a tummy rub and it is important to take these things into account when assessing the efficacy of products for their intended purpose.”
Breastfeed and tummy massages are effective treatments for breastfeeding issues and are supported by the AAP, which recommends that we encourage women to use them as a last resort.””
The most effective way to address post-Pregnancy anxiety is to talk to your healthcare professional and to support them to support you with a safe and effective solution to their anxiety.
“The AAP also recommends that “breastfeeding mothers be aware of their babies’ and their newborns’ potential risks to the environment”.”
We also encourage mothers to use breastfeeding to support their babies and their wellbeing, including by using their bottle as a safe space for breastfeeding, and to limit breastfeeding if breastfeeding is not appropriate for them,” the statement continues.”
Additionally, women can support their infants in a safe, nurturing environment by making safe food choices and using safe household cleaning products.
“Dr Julia Fosse, chair of the AAP Breastfeeding Taskforce, said the results of this study are “encouraging” and added that more research is needed to better understand the health effects of these products.”
Although there is some concern that some of the ingredients in the products may have adverse effects on the developing fetus, we are also beginning to see evidence that these ingredients can also have beneficial effects on mothers,” Dr Fossel said.”
There is also evidence that some breast-feeding products may help reduce post-surgical pain and discomfort.
“These findings raise some exciting possibilities to explore these promising findings in more detail and hopefully to identify new products that are safe, effective and safe for the baby and mothers.”
The full report can be read here: