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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 43  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 108-115

Impact of maternal depression and social factors on child’s nutritional status: a case–control study in Egypt


1 Department of Neurology and Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Minia University, Minia, Egypt
2 Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Minia University, Minia, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Maha A Hassan
Department of Psychiatry, Neurology and Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Minia University, Minia 61111
Egypt
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ejpsy.ejpsy_35_21

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Background Malnutrition is a primary cause of child morbidity. Maternal depression affects children’s health, especially nutrition. Aim This study aimed to explore the effects of maternal depression and social factors on children’s nutrition. Patients and methods A case–control study was carried out on 100 children and their mothers: 50 malnourished children and 50 age-matched and sex-matched healthy-control children. Anthropometric measurements of children were done and transformed into weight-for-age and weight-for-height Z-scores. Screening of depression in mothers was done using Symptom’s Checklist 90-Revised (SCL90-R) Depression dimension. Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) was used to assess maternal cognitive functions. Results Thirty-eight percent mothers of malnourished children were depressed compared with 12% mothers of healthy children. The difference was statistically significant (P<0.05). Statistically significant differences were found regarding maternal age at marriage, education, working status, crowding index, and family income between groups (P<0.01). Mothers of malnourished children had cognitive impairment than controls (P<0.001). The Z-score of malnourished children was positively correlated with breastfeeding duration, maternal age at marriage, education, working status, family income, and other social parameters; and negatively correlated with crowding index and gastrointestinal tract (GIT) morbidity, indicating that malnutrition increases with short duration of breastfeeding, younger maternal age at marriage, low education, bad working status, low income, and high crowding index. Conclusions Mothers of malnourished children have more depressive symptoms and impaired cognitive functions than the controls. Maternal age at marriage, education, family income, and crowding index are predictive variables affecting children nutrition.


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