Send to

Choose Destination
Health Rep. 2007 May;18(2):33-44.

Marital breakdown and subsequent depression.

Author information

Health Analysis and Measurement Group at Statistics Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0T6.



This study examines the relationship between the dissolution of a marital or cohabitating relationship and subsequent depression among Canadians aged 20 to 64.


Data are from the longitudinal component of the National Population Health Survey (1994/1995 through 2004/2005) and include the household population only.


Cross-tabulations were used to examine the association of marital dissolution with change in household income, social support, presence and number of children in the household and employment status over a two-year period. Multiple logistic regression was used to examine associations between marital dissolution and depression over a two-year period among those who had not been depressed two years earlier, while controlling for these changes. To maximize sample size, pooling of repeated observations was used.


For both sexes, dissolution of a marriage or co-habiting relationship was associated with higher odds of a new episode of depression, compared with those who remained with a spouse over the two-year period. When the influences of possible confounders were considered, the association between a break-up and depression was weakened, but persisted. Marital dissolution was more strongly associated with depression among men than among women.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Statistics Canada-Health Analysis Division
Loading ...
Support Center