The Impact of Maternal Depression on the Transition to Parenthood

Linda Mayes, MD

Air Traffic Control, Stress, Brain Plasticity, Brain Architecture, Serve and Return

May 2012

Dr. Linda Mayes explains the key developmental phase in adulthood that is the transition to parenthood, and the psychological states and neural circuits that are reorganized in the process. Her focus in this presentation is how maternal depression impacts adults’ sensitivity to infant cues and ability to think about the infant’s needs, as well as co-occurrences with depression, and their effect on key behaviors necessary for effective parenting.  Dr. Mayes concludes with a call to refocus on how adults make this transition to parenting, and redefine the range of interventions for children and their families.