Mothers who sing to their babies speed up recovery
January 09, 2018
A study published by the British Journal of Psychiatry (BJPsych) shows that singing can help women with post-natal depression ease their symptoms.
The study revealed that mothers who join singing group sessions and sing with their babies recovered much faster from the depression.
Post-natal depression is a type of depression that is experienced by many parents after having a baby. It affects more than 1 in every 10 women within a year of giving birth. This type of depression is as well known to affect fathers of the baby.
The study conducted by BJPsych looked at 134 mothers who were experiencing post-natal depression.
For the research the women were separate into three groups to examine whether singing did decrease the symptoms in the first 40 weeks after birth.
One group took part in group singing, the second took part in creative play exercises and the third received their usual care, which included family support, and taking antidepressants.
The mother from the singing group had learnt children songs and lullabies and in the process created new songs about their experience and motherhood.
Mothers who were participating in the singing group were reported to have an average of 35% decrease in symptoms.
Principal investigator, Dr Rosie Perkins speaking about the findings said: “Post-natal depression is debilitating for mothers and their families, yet our research indicates that for some women something as accessible as singing with their baby could help to speed up recovery at one of the most vulnerable times of their lives.”
Also commenting on the study was Dr Trudi Seneviratne, chairwoman of the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Perinatal Faculty, saying: “It’s exciting to hear about the growing evidence base for novel psycho-social interventions such as singing to facilitate a more rapid recovery for women with post-natal depression.”