Environmental pollution, perinatal depression and anxiety

At BiSC we collected information on the exposure of volunteers to atmospheric pollution and noise during pregnancy. Also, at 32 weeks of pregnancy and in different postnatal visits we performed the Edinburgh test that assesses the risk of perinatal depression. In the future weeks, we will begin the study to determine if there is any association between exposure to atmospheric pollutants during pregnancy and perinatal depression.

Mental illnesses bear a great burdern of disease and they are often incapacitating for the people who suffer from them. Women have a higher prevalence of depression than men, in women it accounts for at least 20% for depression and anxiety disorders. In the specific case of perinatal depression, which is a depression related to pregnancy and motherhood, this prevalence is around 10 – 15% in Spain.

The role of environmental factors, as air pollution, in mental health is not fully known and there is a need for more studies in this area. At BiSC we want to contribute to increase the knowledge in this area. As always, we would like to thank all BiSC volunteers for their participation, otherwise this research would not be possible.

This work is the central part of the PRESSURE project, which is financed by the European Union under the Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under the agreement number 886121 of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grants.

This post has been written by Ioar Rivas, researcher at BiSC Project.