Daughters of women who gave birth at age 30 and above are more likely to experience symptoms of depression as young adults than daughters of younger mothers, revealed a new study.
"This study suggests that older maternal age is associated with symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress in young adult females," said lead author Jessica Tearne from the University of Western Australia.
The researchers analysed data from the Western Australian Pregnancy Cohort Study. From 1989 to 1991, pregnant women were recruited into this study, and provided psychological and demographic information. The resulting offspring then underwent psychological assessment at various ages over the next 23 years.
Daughters whose mothers were age 30 to 34 when they gave birth reported significantly higher levels of stress and those whose mothers were over age 35 at the time of birth had significantly higher levels of stress, depression and anxiety compared with daughters whose mothers were under age 30.
While five percent of the mothers were under age 20 when they gave birth, there was no effect for giving birth in that age group. The fathers' age at the time of birth also had no effect, and there was no effect found for sons. The study appeared in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology.