Antidepressants and breastfeeding, incompatible or not?

Antidepressants and breastfeeding, incompatible or not?

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Breast-feeding with anti-depressants would be safe for the baby, a recent scientific study in Australia revealed. It would also last longer than women who stopped treatment. (News of 25/04/14)

There would be more benefits than risks in continuing treatment while breastfeeding

  • Should we continue antidepressant treatment when we want to breastfeed? A question that is perfectly legitimate to ask.
  • In an attempt to answer it, a team of scientists from the University of Adelaide in Australia conducted a study on the health status of 368 women treated with antidepressants and their babies. She presented the conclusions of this analysis at the 18th Congress of the Perinatal Society of Australia and New Zealand, which took place from April 6 to 9, 2014.
  • The researchers first found that two-thirds of the women had stopped taking their treatment either at the announcement of their pregnancy or at the beginning of their breastfeeding, without having been able to assess the consequences that could have the sudden stop treatment.
  • Of the women who continued their treatment during pregnancy and breastfeeding, 30% continued breastfeeding for 6 months, as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • According to the authors of the study, the dose of drugs transferred by the milk would be low and therefore safe for the baby. "This is an important message because we know that breastfeeding has tremendous benefits for the child and the mother herself, including some protection against postnatal depression," they said.
  • A reassuring message that should not make you forget the basic precautions : any medical treatment can not be continued or interrupted without having received the opinion of a specialist.

Frédérique Odasso