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Do Depressed Moms Predispose Kids to Behavioral Problems?

Adolescents are more likely to engage in substance use and risky behavior if they were exposed to symptoms of maternal depression during their middle childhood years, according to a study published online in Pediatrics . Middle childhood is a period of increasing cognitive, social, and emotional development, which may be particularly relevant to the development of both internalizing and externalizing behavioral patterns, the authors wrote.

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Dr. Sears Comments:

Dr. Barry Sears

It may be a case of fetal programming in which the epigenetics of the child is altered in response to potential sub-clinical depression in the mother.

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