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Striving for better maternal mental healthMental health is an integral part of health and a state of wellbeing. The concept of ‘parity of esteem’ increases awareness that mental health needs to be treated as seriously as physical health. During the childbirth continuum, women and their partners can be at increased risk of mental health problems; therefore it is important to embrace the ‘parity of esteem’ concept. This article highlights links between mental and physical health problems and discusses the vital role that midwives can play in promoting better maternal mental health. It considers the challenges this can present to midwives and maternity services.