New Dad Study

NEST's research aims to improve support for the mental health and wellbeing of new fathers in the UK. You may find the links to additional resources and helplines useful in the resources section.

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Our Aim

Nest's Purpose at a Glance

We would like to learn more about new fathers' early experiences of becoming a parent and how this may impact on their mental health and wellbeing. Our findings will inform how health professionals who are in contact with new parents during and after the birth of their baby could better support new fathers.

Why is fathers’ mental health and wellbeing important?

If fathers are well supported they can better support their partners and contribute positively to the whole family. Fathers who are affectionate, supportive, and involved can improve their child’s development. Children who have good relationships with their fathers as they grow up tend to do better at school, are better at understanding others’ needs, better at making decisions and dealing with different situations. They also seem to be able to cope better with stress, and develop better social skills, have fewer behavioural problems and lower rates of criminality and substance misuse.

The challenges of fatherhood

Becoming a father can be a wonderful time. However it can also be stressful and challenging. Studies have shown that many fathers experience poor mental health and wellbeing around the time of their child’s birth, which has a negative impact on their own health and can affect the health and well-being of their partner and child.

This website presents the background and aims of a study that is being carried out in London. If you are a new dad (within one year of the birth of your first child) or you are about to become a new dad, and live in the London boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark, Ealing, Brent or Harrow you may be able to take part and contribute to this study.

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Our News

Stay up to date with our important work:

Check out our recent editorial piece 'Mental health of first time fathers – it's time to put evidence into practice'

Recently, there has been an increased global policy focus on the need to improve the mental health and wellbeing of the general population. Mental health and wellbeing during the perinatal period is also attracting more attention.

Mental health and wellbeing during the transition to fatherhood: a systematic review of first time fathers’ experiences published today

This systematic review was undertaken as part of the New Dad Study. It collates all existing research on first-time fathers mental health and wellbeing, and makes recommendations for practice. You can access the full paper here: https://journals.lww.

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