The Parenting Science News Feed

The Parenting Science news feed alerts you to updates on the Parenting Science website and to new blog posts or articles written by Gwen Dewar about parenting and child development topics.

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Postpartum depression symptoms: When is it more than the “baby blues?”

depressed mother with infant in foreground

Postpartum depression symptoms overlap with symptoms of the “baby blues,” the mood swings that mothers experience in the first few days after childbirth. But when symptoms persist beyond two weeks — or take a more severe turn — it’s time to get screened for depression.

The Mozart effect: The truth behind the claims

young girl listening to music with headphones, eyes closed

Depending on how you define it, the Mozart effect either doesn’t exist, or is a weak phenomenon with an extremely misleading name. But studies do hint that music can make us feel more alert and focused, giving us a brief cognitive boost. It may also deliver health perks.

How to support language development in babies

woman talking face to face with smilling baby while father holds him

Babies possess amazing learning abilities. But to master language, they need our help. Studies suggest we can support language development by engaging babies in conversation, and by providing them with a variety of special cues and communicative experiences.

When do babies say their first word?

baby and toddler siblings

Babies make lots of communicative noises, but coos, gurgles, and cries aren’t true speech. When do babies say their first words? Most babies can say at least one or two words by the end of their first year, but the timing may vary considerably from individual to individual.