According to a new study presented at the American Sociological Association’s 108th annual meeting, older grandchildren who have good relationships with their grandparents are less likely to suffer from depression and anxiety.
The study was conducted by researchers at Boston College who analyzed information collected from the Longitudinal Study of Generations. The study is basically a survey that looks at American families that are comprised of at least three generations. For the study, the researchers collected information from 376 grandparents and 340 grandchildren.
“We found that an emotionally close grandparent-adult grandchild relationship was associated with fewer symptoms of depression for both generations,” says Sara Moorman, assistant professor in the Department of Sociology and the Institute of Aging at Boston College. “The greater emotional support grandparents and adult grandchildren received from one another, the better their psychological health.”
The rate of depression has increased dramatically over the years as prescriptions being given to treat the condition have risen significantly. In fact, antidepressant medications are the most-prescribed medications on the market these days. One of the drugs used to treat depression is Paxil, which is an SSRI medication. Paxil is linked to increased episodes of violent and suicidal thoughts and behavior as well as birth defects in babies born to mothers who take Paxil while pregnant.
Some of the birth defects linked to Paxil use include PPHN, spina bifida, neural tube defects and heart, lung and brain defects. These complications are why doctors are constantly looking for non-medicinal ways to help treat depression in women who are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant. Other studies show that drugs like Paxil don’t work any better than placebos at curing patients of their depression symptoms. It is for this reason that many doctors are starting only to prescribe drugs like Paxil if the depression is severe or if the patient finds that non-medicinal treatments aren’t working.