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1.
PLoS One ; 17(8): e0273339, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2021914

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has had a negative impact on the mental health of people globally. Significant concerns about health and access to services among women of reproductive age considering pregnancy may cause psychological distress, and in turn increase health risks during and after pregnancy for mothers and offspring. OBJECTIVES: To examine the association between pregnancy intention and psychological distress during the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia, and explore if this association differed based on local viral transmission rates and corresponding levels of pandemic restrictions. METHODS: A nationwide online survey was completed by 849 non-pregnant women aged 18-50 years between 15 October and 7 November 2020. Women were asked about their intention to become pregnant, and psychological distress was assessed using the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K10). Multivariable regression analysis examined associations between pregnancy intention and psychological distress. An interaction term was added to the model to examine differences in associations by level of viral transmission rates and lockdown restrictions which was determined based on postcode. RESULTS: Pregnancy intention was not associated with experiencing (very) high psychological distress in the overall study population (odds ratio (OR) 1.42, 95% CI 0.94, 2.11). The interaction term (p = 0.09) suggested potential differences by level of restrictions and viral transmission rates. In stratified analysis among women living in a location with strict lockdown restrictions and high viral transmission rates leading up to and during the study, those planning to become pregnant were more likely to experience (very) high psychological distress (OR 3.39, 2.04, 5.65) compared with women not planning to become pregnant. Pregnancy intention was not associated with psychological distress among women exposed to lower levels of pandemic restrictions and viral transmission rates (OR 1.17, 0.74, 1.85). CONCLUSIONS: Our findings highlight the need to identify and support women planning pregnancy during a public health crisis to mitigate potential short- and long-term intergenerational negative health outcomes associated with psychological distress.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Psychological Distress , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Female , Humans , Pandemics , Pregnancy
2.
Nutrition ; 103-104: 111794, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2015889

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to explore psychological distress, lifestyle, and demographic factors, as well as their relationship to discretionary choices in women of reproductive age during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic in Australia. METHODS: Reproductive-aged women (18-50 y) in Australia participated in a national online survey. Psychological distress score (using a validated 10-item Kessler Psychological Distress Scale questionnaire) was the primary exposure of interest, and key outcomes were frequencies of discretionary choices (sugar-sweetened beverages [SSBs], alcohol, and discretionary foods). Sociodemographic and physical activity data were also collected. Logistic regression was used to report adjusted odds ratio (aOR) and 95% confidence interval to predict SSBs (less than weekly; most days/daily), total discretionary foods (none/<2 times/d; ≥3 times/d), and alcohol use (never/less than monthly; most weeks/daily). RESULTS: A total of 1005 women were included in the study, of whom 40% had a high level of psychological distress. Women with high psychological distress (aOR: 1.96; 95% CI, 1.32-2.91) and those who gained weight during the pandemic (aOR: 1.71; 95% CI, 1.10-2.65) were more likely to consume discretionary foods ≥3 times/d. There was no association between psychological distress and SSB intake or alcohol; however, Australian, New Zealander, or Pacific Islander background (aOR: 1.68; 95% CI, 1.21-2.33) and more hours of sitting time (aOR: 1.88; 95% CI, 1.07-3.29) were associated with SSB consumption on most days/daily. Older age (aOR: 1.70; 95% CI, 1.00-2.89), higher household income (aOR: 1.44; 95% CI, 1.08-1.92), and moderate or high physical activity (aOR: 1.75; 95% CI, 1.10-2.80) were associated with alcohol intake on most weeks/daily. CONCLUSIONS: Public health messaging to promote healthy eating should take into account the effect of psychological distress on health behavior. Messages aimed at maintaining a positive relationship between food intake and mental wellbeing, particularly among vulnerable groups, are warranted.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Psychological Distress , Sugar-Sweetened Beverages , Humans , Female , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Beverages , Australia/epidemiology
3.
JAMA Intern Med ; 182(2): 106-114, 2022 Feb 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1838104

ABSTRACT

IMPORTANCE: Excessive gestational weight gain (GWG) is common and associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes. Antenatal lifestyle interventions limit GWG; yet benefits of different intervention types and specific maternal and neonatal outcomes are unclear. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the association of different types of diet and physical activity-based antenatal lifestyle interventions with GWG and maternal and neonatal outcomes. DATA SOURCES: A 2-stage systematic literature search of MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, and Health Technology Assessment Database was conducted from February 1, 2017, to May 31, 2020. Search results from the present study were integrated with those from a previous systematic review from 1990 to February 2017. STUDY SELECTION: Randomized trials reporting GWG and maternal and neonatal outcomes. DATA EXTRACTION AND SYNTHESIS: Data were extracted for random-effects meta-analyses to calculate the summary effect estimates and 95% CIs. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Outcomes were clinically prioritized, with mean GWG as the primary outcome. Secondary outcomes included gestational diabetes, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, cesarean section, preterm delivery, large or small for gestational age neonates, neonatal intensive care unit admission, or fetal death. RESULTS: A total of 117 randomized clinical trials of antenatal lifestyle interventions (involving 34 546 women) were included. Overall lifestyle intervention was associated with reduced GWG (-1.15 kg; 95% CI, -1.40 to -0.91), risk of gestational diabetes (odds ratio [OR], 0.79; 95% CI, 0.70-0.89), and total adverse maternal outcomes (OR, 0.89; 95% CI, 0.84-0.94) vs routine care. Compared with routine care, diet was associated with less GWG (-2.63 kg; 95% CI, -3.87 to -1.40) than physical activity (-1.04 kg; 95% CI, -1.33 to -0.74) or mixed interventions (eg, unstructured lifestyle support, written information with weight monitoring, or behavioral support alone) (-0.74 kg; 95% CI, -1.06 to -0.43). Diet was associated with reduced risk of gestational diabetes (OR, 0.61; 95% CI, 0.45-0.82), preterm delivery (OR, 0.43; 95% CI, 0.22-0.84), large for gestational age neonate (OR, 0.19; 95% CI, 0.08-0.47), neonatal intensive care admission (OR, 0.68; 95% CI, 0.48-0.95), and total adverse maternal (OR, 0.75; 95% CI, 0.61-0.92) and neonatal outcomes (OR, 0.44; 95% CI, 0.26-0.72). Physical activity was associated with reduced GWG and reduced risk of gestational diabetes (OR, 0.60; 95% CI, 0.47-0.75), hypertensive disorders (OR, 0.66; 95% CI, 0.48-0.90), cesarean section (OR, 0.85; 95% CI, 0.75-0.95), and total adverse maternal outcomes (OR, 0.78; 95% CI, 0.71-0.86). Diet with physical activity was associated with reduced GWG (-1.35 kg; 95% CI, -1.95 to -0.75) and reduced risk of gestational diabetes (OR, 0.72; 95% CI, 0.54-0.96) and total adverse maternal outcomes (OR, 0.81; 95% CI, 0.69-0.95). Mixed interventions were associated with reduced GWG only. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: This systematic review and meta-analysis found level 1 evidence that antenatal structured diet and physical activity-based lifestyle interventions were associated with reduced GWG and lower risk of adverse maternal and neonatal outcomes. The findings support the implementation of such interventions in routine antenatal care and policy around the world.


Subject(s)
Diabetes, Gestational , Gestational Weight Gain , Hypertension , Premature Birth , Cesarean Section , Diabetes, Gestational/epidemiology , Diabetes, Gestational/prevention & control , Diet , Exercise , Female , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Male , Pregnancy , Pregnancy Outcome/epidemiology , Premature Birth/epidemiology , Premature Birth/prevention & control , Weight Gain
4.
Nutrients ; 13(12)2021 Nov 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1542686

ABSTRACT

This study aimed to describe the prevalence, severity and socio-demographic predictors of food insecurity in Australian households during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, from the perspective of women. A cross-sectional online survey of Australian (18-50 years) women was conducted. The survey collected demographic information and utilised the 18-item US Department of Agriculture Household Food Security Survey Module and the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K10). A multivariable regression was used to identify predictors of food security status. In this cohort (n = 1005), 19.6% were living in households experiencing food insecurity; with 11.8% experiencing low food-security and 7.8% very low food-security. A further 13.7% of households reported marginal food-security. Poor mental health status (K10 score ≥ 20) predicted household food insecurity at all levels. The presence of more than three children in the household was associated with low food-security (OR 6.24, 95% CI: 2.59-15.03). Those who were renting were 2.10 (95% CI: 1.09-4.05) times likely to experience very low food-security than those owning their own home. The COVID-19 pandemic may have contributed to an increased prevalence of household food insecurity. This study supports the need for a range of responses that address mental health, financial, employment and housing support to food security in Australia.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Food Insecurity , Mental Health , Pandemics , Adolescent , Adult , Australia/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Middle Aged , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2 , Socioeconomic Factors
5.
J Med Internet Res ; 22(9): e22002, 2020 09 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-732939

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 global pandemic has impacted the whole of society, requiring rapid implementation of individual-, population-, and system-level public health responses to contain and reduce the spread of infection. Women in the perinatal period (pregnant, birthing, and postpartum) have unique and timely needs for directives on health, safety, and risk aversion during periods of isolation and physical distancing for themselves, their child or children, and other family members. In addition, they are a vulnerable group at increased risk of psychological distress that may be exacerbated in the context of social support deprivation and a high-risk external environment. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study is to examine the public discourse of a perinatal cohort to understand unmet health information and support needs, and the impacts on mothering identity and social dynamics in the context of COVID-19. METHODS: A leading Australian online support forum for women pre- through to postbirth was used to interrogate all posts related to COVID-19 from January 27 to May 12, 2020, inclusive. Key search terms included "COVID," "corona," and "pandemic." A three-phase analysis was conducted, including thematic analysis, sentiment analysis, and word frequency calculations. RESULTS: The search yielded 960 posts, of which 831 were included in our analysis. The qualitative thematic analysis demonstrated reasonable understanding, interpretation, and application of relevant restrictions in place, with five emerging themes identified. These were (1) heightened distress related to a high-risk external environment; (2) despair and anticipatory grief due to deprivation of social and family support, and bonding rituals; (3) altered family and support relationships; (4) guilt-tampered happiness; and (5) family future postponed. Sentiment analysis revealed that the content was predominantly negative (very negative: n=537 and moderately negative: n=443 compared to very positive: n=236 and moderately positive: n=340). Negative words were frequently used in the 831 posts with associated derivatives including "worried" (n=165, 19.9%), "risk" (n=143, 17.2%), "anxiety" (n=98, 11.8%), "concerns" (n=74, 8.8%), and "stress" (n=69, 8.3%). CONCLUSIONS: Women in the perinatal period are uniquely impacted by the current pandemic. General information on COVID-19 safe behaviors did not meet the particular needs of this cohort. The lack of nuanced and timely information may exacerbate the risk of psychological and psychosocial distress in this vulnerable, high-risk group. State and federal public health departments need to provide a central repository of information that is targeted, consistent, accessible, timely, and reassuring. Compensatory social and emotional support should be considered, using alternative measures to mitigate the risk of mental health disorders in this cohort.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Internet , Mental Health/statistics & numerical data , Mothers/psychology , Parenting/psychology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Postpartum Period/psychology , Pregnancy/psychology , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology , Adult , Anxiety/epidemiology , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Child , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , Parturition/psychology , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/prevention & control , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/psychology , Social Support
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