Maternal Mental Health in Canada

Release date: June 24, 2019
Maternal Mental Health in Canada
Description: Maternal Mental Health in Canada

Maternal Mental Health in Canada

The 2018/2019 Survey on Maternal Health provides a snapshot of the mental health of mothers who recently gave birth in Canada.

Percentage of mothers reporting feelings consistent with post-partum depression (PPD) or an anxiety disorder.

Percentage of mothers reporting feelings consistent with post-partum depression (PPD) or an anxiety disorder.
Province Percentage Compared to National Average
Canada 23  
Newfoundland and Labrador 28 higher
Prince Edward Island 26 similar
Nova Scotia 31 higher
New Brunswick 24 similar
Quebec 23 similar
Ontario 23 similar
Manitoba 24 similar
Saskatchewan 16 lower
Alberta 22 similar
British Columbia 23 similar
Note: No data available in the territories

Percentage of mothers reporting feelings consistent with:

  • No feelings of PPD or anxiety – 77%
  • PPD or anxiety disorder – 23%
    • PPD only – 10%
    • Anxiety only – 5%
    • PPD and anxiety  – 8%

Signs of depression or anxiety in new mothers may appear within the first year after birth and can last months or years.  These signs include feelings of sadness, worry, and tiredness. Unlike "baby blues," these feelings are more intense and longer lasting, and may not resolve on their own.
– Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)

Percentage of mothers concerned about their mental health

Percentage of mothers concerned about their mental health: 33%

85% of concerned mothers talked to someone including:

  • Spouse or partner – 77%
  • Family or friend – 74%
  • Family doctor, midwife or nurse – 43%
  • Psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker, or counsellor – 24%
  • Someone else – 6%

Note: Mothers may have spoken with more than one source

Self-rated mental health of mothers

  • Among mothers who did not report feelings consistent with PPD or an anxiety disorder:
    • Excellent or Very Good – 70%
    • Good – 26%
    • Fair or Poor – 4%
  • Among mothers who reported feelings consistent with PPD and/or an anxiety disorder:
    • Excellent or Very Good – 24%
    • Good – 43%
    • Fair or Poor - 34%

Source: Survey on Maternal Health 2018/2019

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