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Perinatal Mental Health

Checked: 08-03-2024 by 7 katy baetjer Next Review: 04-03-2026

Perinatal Mental Health

The term perinatal refers to the period from conception through the first year of the child’s life. N.B. There is a view that the timeframe should be extended to the first 1,000 days of a child’s life. Therefore, while the term perinatal refers to the shorter timeframe, there may be funded projects and research published that have adopted the longer one.

Avon and Wiltshire Partnership (AWP) provide a Specialist Community Perinatal Mental Health Service (SCPNS) and Maternal Loss & Trauma Service (MaLT) covering the BNSSG area.

SCPNS is an ageless service covering pre-pregnancy, antenatal and postnatal mental health concerns. People below 18 years of age will be jointly supported with the CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service).

For further details on SCPNS and MaLT follow this link Community Perinatal Mental Health Service


If you have any concerns relating to

  1. Perinatal Mental Health
  2. Maternal Loss and Trauma

Please refer to the using this referral form 

Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service - The referral window for the SCPNS is pregnancy to 20 months postnatal

Maternal Loss & Trauma Service - The referral window for the MaLT service is from 4 weeks to 5 years from traumatic birth.

Prescribing Advice & Guidance

AWP provide prescribing information on this link Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust Home ( including patient information leaflets.

The Bumps website also offers information on use of individual medicines specifically in pregnancy, including anti-depressants.

AWP provide prescribing guidance for perinatal mental health on this link

As a health care professional if you have perinatal medication concerns that the information on this page hasn’t resolved please refer to using this referral form 

Stressful/traumatic labour and delivery

There is currently no birth debriefing clinic running at St Michael’s, but mothers who delivered at Southmead can be referred to their Afterthoughts clinic using this form.

Self Care

Various organisations offer support for mums and dads during the perinatal period:

  • NHS Talking Therapies- BNSSG Talking Therapies service.
  • Dadpad- website has resources for Dads.
  • Mothers for mothers- Bristol based charity that has useful information and runs peer support groups for Bristol and South Glos mothers.
  • Rockabye - runs antenatal and postnatal courses across Bristol - delivered from Children's centres.
  • Home-Start North Somerset - Offers support to parents, including home visits.

Below are some useful links to helpful online resources:

Mental Health Self-help guides which include one on Postnatal depression

Health Visiting: Getting support with your family’s emotional wellbeing – Children and Young People’s Services ( – there are links to lots of local and national support on this page


Efforts are made to ensure the accuracy and agreement of these guidelines, including any content uploaded, referred to or linked to from the system. However, BNSSG ICB cannot guarantee this. This guidance does not override the individual responsibility of healthcare professionals to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or guardian or carer, in accordance with the mental capacity act, and informed by the summary of product characteristics of any drugs they are considering. Practitioners are required to perform their duties in accordance with the law and their regulators and nothing in this guidance should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.

Information provided through Remedy is continually updated so please be aware any printed copies may quickly become out of date.