Current Projects

The PAR Lab is dedicated to promoting the health and well-being of new and expectant mothers, and their babies. Pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period are times of significant change and challenge, that can have a significant impact on maternal mental health. We look to investigate how mental health issues can:

    • develop and/or be exacerbated during the perinatal period;
    • affect the physical health of women; and
    • ultimately, affect the physical health of their babies.

Here is a listing of all of the PAR Lab’s Current Projects. If you would like to learn more about our projects, you can Contact Us.

Fear of Childbirth

Current measures of fear of childbirth fail to assess some key domains of women’s childbirth fears (e.g., social embarrassment), and also include numerous items unrelated to fear (e.g., elation). In an effort to correct these issues we developed the Childbirth Fear Questionnaire (CFQ). The current study aims to identify the clinical significance of the CFQ in screening for women suffering from a specific phobia of fear of childbirth. Learn more about the Fear of Childbirth and the Childbirth Fear Questionnaire.


New Mothers’ Thoughts of Harm, OCD, and Infant Safety

Most new mothers experience unwanted thoughts about harm coming to their infant. These thoughts can be about accidental or intentional harm, and may be upsetting to the women who experience them. The purpose of this research is to learn more about the relationship of these kinds of thoughts to new mothers’ experience of depression, anxiety and parenting. Learn more.

Screening for Perinatal Anxiety and Related Disorders

One in five pregnant and postpartum women are affected by anxiety and related disorders. However, lack of routine screening means that many who could benefit from treatment may not be identified. We are currently investigating which screening tools for anxiety and anxiety-related disorders are the most appropriate for use during pregnancy or the postpartum period.

We are currently recuiting for participants in our Perinatal Anxiety Screening Study. Learn more about how to participate.