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Fathers' Mental Health Could Affect Toddler Development


The mental health of a father-to-be may have a significant impact on the temprament of a toddler, says a new study from researchers at University of Bergen in Norway. For the study, lead researcher Anne Lise Kvalevaag and her team surveyed 31,000 children and their parents in Norway.

On the survey, fathers were asked about their mental health during the pregnancy and mothers provided information about their children's social and behavioral patterns up to three years. They found that children born to fathers with highest levels of stress and anxiety also had the highest levels of emotional trouble.

"The results of this study point to the fact that the father's mental health represents a risk factor for child development, whereas the traditional view has been that this risk in large is represented by the mother," said Kvalevaag. "The father's mental health should therefore be addressed both in research and clinical practice."

Their data appears January 7 in Pediatrics.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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