THE PHYSICAL health of new mums is well monitored but what about their mental health and that of new dads?

HealthWatch Dorset is trying to find out, via a new survey, so it can help tackle the mental health issues which come with being a new parent.

As many as one in five pregnant women and new mums experience some form of mental health challenge, says the watchdog. Around one in 10 fathers experience similar symptoms to those suffered by mothers during postnatal depression.

Dr Andy Mayers, an expert in perinatal mental health at Bournemouth University, said:

“Men are 47 times more likely to be at risk of suicide after they’ve had a baby than at any other time. So, it’s really important that this Healthwatch England survey is completed by fathers, as well as mothers, to help us learn more about their experiences. If you or someone you know has recently become a parent, please encourage them to complete this short survey – it only takes 5 minutes and with your help we really can make a difference.”

He's made a short video appeal for Healthwatch Dorset, to encourage more fathers to take part in the maternal mental health survey through social media. He hopes it will help discover whether the increased NHS spending on mental health is making a difference.

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