Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Parenthood Poses Threat of Mental Illness in Addition to Abortion

A study performed by Danish scientists concludes that having a baby does leave a woman at risk for having mental-health problems in the future, in comparison with abortion.

The study used 365,550 Danish women who either had an abortion or the child for the first time between 1995 and 2007. Out of these, 84,620 had abortions. Within the year after these abortions were performed, about 1.5% sought phychiatric help. Of those who carried to full term, the risk was .39% before delivery and .67% after delivery.

Researchers answer the question that asks why do first-time mothers have a lower risk for becoming mentally ill than those who have abortions? The answer is that women who have this procedure done are more likely to have had emotional instability in the first place, as well as economic hardships and a higher rate of unexpected pregnancies.

However, women who had their child experience a doubled risk, 1.3%, in the year after giving birth. This jump is due to hormonal changes, sleep deprivation and parental stress - experiences the women who terminate their pregnancies do not have.

The study is drawing religious and philosophical responses.

Gianna Canevari

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