Women giving birth in the winter months are at greater risk of post-natal depression, a study has found.
Doctors believe the lower levels of natural daylight may be to blame for the extra cases of ‘baby blues’.
Researchers monitored 293 first-time mothers before and after pregnancy.
Information was recorded about how much daylight the women experienced during the final trimester of pregnancy, together with other information such as risk factors – having had a history of depression, the woman’s age, her socio-economic status and how much she slept.
Generally, 30 % of the women suffered depression after birth. But the lowest risk for depression – 26 %– occurred among women whose final third of their pregnancy coincided with longer daylight hours of summer.