Maternal postpartum depression has been extensively studied over the past 25-30 years and it is estimated that approximately 17% of women will suffer from postpartum depression within one year after the birth of their child (O'Hara & Swain, 1996). Paternal postpartum depression has only begun to be studied over the past 10 years. Increasing interest has been placed on depression in fathers during the postpartum period, as research shows the negative impact depression in both or either parent can have not only on the individual and the couple but also on the development and behaviors of the infant and child. Of particular note in the most recent research is whether or not there is a relationship between maternal postpartum depression and paternal postpartum depression. This study provides background on depression and gender differences, maternal postpartum depression and paternal postpartum depression. This background serves as the framework for a review of seven identified articles to understand whether or not there is a relationship between maternal and paternal postpartum depression. The literature review revealed that the articles did show a relationship between maternal and paternal postpartum depression.
Given the impact on an infant's development of having parents with postpartum depression, the clinical implications of understanding if a relationship exists and if so what steps can be taken to mitigate the effects on the individual, couple and child must be considered. Limitations within the seven studies reviewed included variability in assessment tools and applicable cut-off scores, criteria for article selection, and directionality of the relationship.
|Commitee:||Black, Katherine, Carlson, Tom|
|School:||University of Hartford|
|School Location:||United States -- Connecticut|
|Source:||DAI-B 75/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Depression, Postnatal depression, Postpartum depression|
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