Association of breastfeeding and adolescents' psychopathology: a large prospective study

Hayatbakhsh, Mohammad R., O'Callaghan, Michael J., Bor, William, Williams, Gail M. and Najman, Jake M. (2012) Association of breastfeeding and adolescents' psychopathology: a large prospective study. Breastfeeding Medicine, 7 6: 480-486. doi:10.1089/bfm.2011.0136

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Author Hayatbakhsh, Mohammad R.
O'Callaghan, Michael J.
Bor, William
Williams, Gail M.
Najman, Jake M.
Title Association of breastfeeding and adolescents' psychopathology: a large prospective study
Journal name Breastfeeding Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1556-8253
Publication date 2012-12-10
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1089/bfm.2011.0136
Volume 7
Issue 6
Start page 480
End page 486
Total pages 7
Place of publication New Rochelle, NY, United States
Publisher Mary Ann Liebert
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Purpose: There is little known about the association between breastfeeding and long-term child psychopathology. This study aimed to examine the impact of breastfeeding on child mental health and problem behavior at 14 years and whether this association is confounded by other variables.
Subjects and Methods: Data were from a pre-birth prospective study that included mothers and their children followed up from pregnancy to 14 years of the child's age in Brisbane, Australia. The child's anxiety/depression, withdrawal problems, somatic complaints, social problems, thought problems, attention problems, aggression, and delinquency were measured using the Achenbach Youth Self Report at 14 years. Breastfeeding was prospectively assessed at the 6-month follow-up of the study. The analysis was based on 4,502 adolescents who responded to the YSR questionnaire and for whom prospective data were available on breastfeeding.
Results: Breastfeeding as reported by mothers when the child was 6 months old predicted reduced symptoms of child mental health and problem behavior at 14 years. The impact of breastfeeding on the child's social problems, attention problems, and aggressive behavior remained statistically significant after controlling for the effect of other variables, such as unplanned pregnancy, maternal mental health, and substance use during pregnancy.
Conclusions: Our data suggest that breastfeeding for at least 4 months can have a significant protective effect on a child's social, attention, and aggression problems in early adolescence. Given the limitations of the existing evidence, further research is needed to investigate the robustness of the findings of this study and the mechanisms of long-term association between breastfeeding and reduced social, attention, and aggression problems of the offspring in adolescence.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
School of Medicine Publications
School of Social Science Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 7 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 8 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Wed, 12 Dec 2012, 14:36:31 EST by Geraldine Fitzgerald on behalf of School of Public Health