OPEN Research Support

Associate professor
Mette Bliddal
OPEN, Odense University Hospital and University of Southern Denmark

Projekt styring
Projekt status    Open
Data indsamlingsdatoer
Start 15.02.2022  
Slut 31.10.2022  

Reproduction and mental health in Denmark: Trajectories, variation and associations

Short summary

Some mental health conditions are more frequent among women than men. Psychiatric disorders and psychotropic drug use in pregnancy may affect the mental health of the offspring. We aim to describe mental illness in pregnancy and examine consequences of parental disease on mental health of the offspring. The studies are population-based and use data from national health registers. Our studies will guide the understanding of mental health in a developmental perspective.


Over the last 20 years, there has been an increase in mental disorders especially among women and children. Studies indicate that time of pregnancy and childbirth is vulnerable for some women and that children born of mothers with mental illness are at increased risk of poor mental health. Despite the increase in mental disorders and use of psychotropic drugs, there is a lack in analyses of variation in psychopathology and treatment in relation to reproduction, fetal programming and mental health in children and adolescents mental health. Further, there is a lack of knowledge of predictors for psychiatric disorders and treatment such as prior somatic and psychiatric disorders and socio- and social condition. Finally, association between mental disorders and psychotropic drugs and long-term consequences are warranted.

Thus, we aim to describe the development and variation in use of psychotropic drugs and psychiatric disorders as well as associations with others diseases in women in the reproductive age, parents and children. Further, we will examine short- and long-term consequences of parental psychiatric disease and their use of psychotropic drugs.

Description of the cohort

We include all children born in Denmark between 1997 and onward, their biological parents and for comparison, all women in Denmark above 15 years of age alive between 1972 and forward.

Data and biological material

The studies are register-based and uses data from the Danish National health registers.

Collaborating researchers and departments

The Research Unit of Psychiatry, Department of Clinical Research, University of Southern Denmark

  • Trine Munk-Olsen

Clinical Pharmacology, Pharmacy and Environmental Medicine, Department of Public Health, Univeristy of Southern Denmark

  • Anton Pottegård