The Maternal Mental Health Experiences of Young Mums

A new report from the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition (CYPMHC) and the Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA) shines a light on the urgent needs of young mums and how across the UK we must make the report recommendations a positive reality.

The Maternal Mental Health Experiences of Young Mums explores the maternal mental health experiences of young mums aged 16-25. The report is based on first hand insights from young mums and a rapid review of the literature. Through focus groups, CYPMHC and MMHA spoke to young mums from across the UK about their experiences of service provision and support, and listened to their views on what needs to change to better support young mums and their mental health.

The report finds that although young mums aged 16-25 are at higher risk of experiencing mental health problems during pregnancy and after birth, they can face significant barriers in accessing support and where they do access support, experiences of services can be poor.

Based on the experiences and insights received from young mothers and the evidence collated in the literature review, the report identifies 4 priority areas for action to better support the needs of young mothers:

  1. Listen and respond to the needs of young mothers in national and local systems
  2. Resource and invest in universal and preventative services
  3. Ensure access to specialist mental health services
  4. Research and listen to the voices of young mums

For too long, young mums’ needs and views have been ignored. It is time their experiences were listened to, and their needs centred in the planning of perinatal mental health support. This report provides an important starting point, but it is vital that we listen to their voices in order to build effective systems of support.

You can read more about our findings by downloading the documents below:

About Maternal Mental Health Alliance:

The Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA) is a UK-wide charity and network of over 120 organisations, dedicated to ensuring all women and families impacted by perinatal mental health problems have access to high-quality, compassionate care and support. We bring the maternal mental health community together and make change happen by combining the power of real-life experience with clinical and professional expertise.