Neurons that secrete oxytocin in the paraventricular nucleus in the hypothalamus are responsible for activating paternal instincts in new fathers, a mouse model study finds.
Paternal depression may contribute to adolescent depression and behavioral problems, regardless of whether or not the father and child are genetically related, researchers say.
Unplanned fatherhood is linked to an increased risk of postnatal depression in both parents and behavioral problems in the offspring, researchers report.
Fathers who have more positive attitudes about their parenting abilities, and fatherhood in general, show differences in their brains to those who don't, researchers report.
Expectant fathers with higher levels of brain activation and oxytocin later endorsed a more "child-led" empathetic style of parenting once their child was born.
Men's caregiving work within a family may help to protect them against suicide, particularly in times of economic difficulties.
Some traditional masculine stereotypes, such as being adventurous and competitive, were linked to being better fathers to infant children. This is especially true if men also adopt a nurturing role. However, one trait, hostile sexism, was not linked to improvements in parenting skills.
A new study reports paternal anxiety is much higher than previously reported. Findings reveal anxiety in men during the perinatal period was 11%. Previous reports found anxiety in males during this period was under 4%.
Fathers who sleep more than other fathers experience lower overall well-being and closeness with their partners and children, while women who are able to sleep more report a greater sense of well-being. The study also found exercise impacts parental moods, reporting on days where men exercise more than usual, they are less likely to argue. By contrast, mothers who embark on more physical activity during the day experienced higher levels of emotional negativity and were more likely to have arguments. Researchers speculate this could be a result of paternal 'stress' of taking up the primary caregiving role for a time to allow his wife time to herself, causing a more argumentative state in males.
Researchers explore why our time perception alters and why we think our children are growing up faster than they actually are.