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Podcast: Friends, family, outdoors provide pandemic pregnancy support

Kaiser Permanente survey finds coping mechanisms associated with fewer depression, anxiety symptoms


The COVID-19 pandemic — with its disease risk, lifestyle changes, and periods of social isolation — has been particularly hard on people who are pregnant, with the potential to launch or worsen depression and anxiety symptoms.


But new research shows many people were able to use coping strategies to lessen the chance their mental health would suffer during the pandemic. The study was published in The Journal of Affective Disorders in late April. It identified talking with friends and family, along with being physically active outside, as effective coping strategies to keep depression and anxiety symptoms at bay.

Two authors of the study from the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research spoke to KP Research Radio about the findings: lead author Sylvia Badon, PhD, staff scientist, and senior author Lyndsay Avalos, MD, PhD, a research scientist.

The pandemic pregnancy survey has produced more research studies. Read more about findings on the pandemic changes that were linked to depression and anxiety in pregnant patients, and about racial and ethnic disparities in how the pandemic affected mental health during pregnancy.


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