A critical period of brain development occurs in adolescence and early adulthood (up to around age 25). During this time, neural connections in the cortex are being further specialized and pruned; and myelin sheath is surrounding the nerves’ axons and increases the speed of neurotransmission. Both of these are needed to have rapid, logic-oriented communication in the brain.
When a woman experiences a mental illness before pregnancy, she is more at risk of developing mental health concerns during and after pregnancy. It is important for health care professionals to know a woman’s mental health history. Care before, during, and after pregnancy will be tailored to meet the woman’s needs.
The impact of chronic and acute mental illness of a parent on young children can depend on the environment in which it is experienced. Outcomes for children who live in families where only one parent is mentally ill are better than those who live in families with two parents who are mentally ill.
The Saskatchewan Early Childhood Mental Health Provincial Network provides an opportunity for professionals interested and/or working in the area of early childhood mental health to network, share information about current services, collaborate, and keep up-to-date with current research.