Small survey finds that new mothers use self-care approaches to manage fatigue more often than other strategies such as seeking help from others
- Deputy Director and Coordinator of International Programmes Centre for Women's Health, Gender and Society
- Correspondence to Associate Professor Jane Fisher
Centre for Women's Health, Gender and Society, Melbourne School of Population Health, University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010, Australia;
- Published Online First 16 August 2010
Fatigue in mothers of newborns is widespread and especially problematic for those whose domestic workload is not shared and who have unsettled infants. Maternal exhaustion can be persistent and disabling. In the absence of a clear evidence based to management, it is often normalised, or responded to with advice that might be unproven, ineffective and difficult to implement including ‘sleep when the baby sleeps’. Taylor and Johnstone argue that it is relevant to know what fatigue self-management strategies mothers of young infants use.
The purposive sample of 59 women was drawn by a non-systematic process from a larger (undescribed) study. Data were collected by surveys containing three open-ended questions about fatigue-management strategies posted to participants at 6, 12 and 24 weeks after they had given birth. It appears that the investigators also had access to psychometric data collected in the primary study which were used to categorise participants into groups on the basis of severity of fatigue and depressive …