Zondervan-Zwijnenburg MAJ, Veldkamp SAM, Nelemans SA, Neumann A, Barzeva SA, Branje SJT, Van Beijsterveldt CEM, et al. › Trails

TRAILS

Parental age and offspring childhood mental health: A multi-cohort, population-based investigation

Authors: Zondervan-Zwijnenburg MAJ, Veldkamp SAM, Nelemans SA, Neumann A, Barzeva SA, Branje SJT, Van Beijsterveldt CEM, et al.

To examine the contributions of maternal and paternal age on offspring externalizing and internalizing problems, this study analyzed problem behaviors at age 10–12 years from four Dutch population‐based cohorts (N = 32,892) by a multiple informant design. Bayesian evidence synthesis was used to combine results across cohorts with 50% of the data analyzed for discovery and 50% for confirmation. There was evidence of a robust negative linear relation between parental age and externalizing problems as reported by parents. In teacher‐reports, this relation was largely explained by parental socio‐economic status. Parental age had limited to no association with internalizing problems. Thus, in this large population‐based study, either a beneficial or no effect of advanced parenthood on child problem behavior was observed.

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