The Longitudinal Impact of Maternal Depression and Neighborhood Social Context on Adolescent Mental Health

Daphne Lew, Hong Xian, Travis Loux, Enbal Shacham, Darcell Scharff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Purpose: Maternal depression and neighborhood characteristics are known to be associated both with each other and with adolescent mental health outcomes. These exposures are also subject to change throughout the life of a child. This study sought to identify multi-trajectories of maternal depression (MD) and self-reported neighborhood collective efficacy (NCE) over a 12-year period and determine whether these trajectories are differentially associated with adolescent mental health. Methods: Data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing study, a longitudinal cohort study of new parents and their children, were used. Maternal depression (MD) and self-reported NCE when the child was 3, 5, 9, and 15 years of age were the primary exposures of interest. Adolescent depression and anxiety symptomology when the child was 15 years of age were the primary outcomes. Primary analyses were conducted using multi-trajectory modeling and linear regressions. Results: Five multi-trajectories were identified, two of which were characterized by no MD but either high or low NCE, and three of which were characterized by similarly moderate levels of NCE but either increasing, decreasing, or consistently high MD. Children of mothers with increasing or consistently high depressive symptomology and moderate NCE had significantly higher depression and anxiety scores compared to children of mothers with no depressive symptomology and high NCE. Conclusion: Adolescents with consistent and proximal exposure to MD are most likely to suffer from adverse mental health and should be provided with appropriate support systems to mitigate these outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number854418
JournalFrontiers in Pediatrics
StatePublished - Jun 23 2022


  • anxiety
  • collective efficacy
  • depression
  • longitudinal studies
  • maternal-child health
  • mental health
  • neighborhoods


Dive into the research topics of 'The Longitudinal Impact of Maternal Depression and Neighborhood Social Context on Adolescent Mental Health'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this