New mental health service launched to support parents

A new service to support parents with their mental health and well-being during pregnancy and after birth has been launched in Tayside.

The Perinatal and Infant Mental Health (PNIMH) Service will provide support to pregnant women, new mums and their families during the perinatal period, which is from conception to 18 months after a baby is born.

Untreated perinatal mental health problems are a major public health concern and can have long-term impacts on the physical and mental health outcomes of mothers, babies, partners, and families.

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The team can offer specialist mental health assessment, care and treatment for those who are experiencing or are at risk of developing moderate to severe perinatal mental illness. This can include postpartum psychosis and severe affective disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder.

Parents and families can be referred in to the PNIMH service from healthcare professionals including midwives, GPs, health visitors and community mental health teams.

Anyone with concerns about their mental health should speak to one of these professionals in the first instance for signposting or referral for further support.

Beth Gow, team leader, said: “This will play a key role in supporting the changing needs of women and families throughout pregnancy and early years of life.

"We aim to work in partnership with families and other professionals involved in women’s care, to provide early intervention and holistic support to ensure the best possible outcomes.”

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