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Offspring of mothers who had antenatal depression and experienced maltreatment in childhood are more likely to experience child maltreatment themselves
  1. Deborah M Capaldi
  1. Oregon Social Learning Center, Eugene, Oregon, USA
  1. Correspondence to: Dr Deborah Capaldi
    Oregon Social Learning Center, 10 Shelton McMurphey Blvd, Eugene 97401, Oregon, USA; deborahc{at}oslc.org

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Implications for practice and research

  • Girls who experience maltreatment are at risk for long-term psychopathology, including antenatal depression and antisocial behaviour and their offspring are also at risk for maltreatment and adolescent antisocial behaviour if their mothers experienced both maltreatment and antenatal depression.

  • Early prevention of childhood maltreatment is necessary to prevent intergenerational transmission of psychopathology.

  • Screening pregnant women for a history of maltreatment, and starting prevention or treatment of depression and teaching parenting skills is indicated.

Context

In 2010, close to 700 000 children were found to be victims of maltreatment.1 The WHO ranks major depression as …

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