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Implications for practice and research
Women are vulnerable to depression and anxiety during pregnancy and post partum, yet only one in four seek help.
Clinical management of mothers experiencing depression should assess for substance abuse, unmet needs and psychiatric co-morbidities.
Population-based studies can determine prevalence but cause and effect is best shown through intervention-based randomised controlled trials.
Depressed women are less likely to respond to surveys, so using face-to-face and telephone interviews can enhance response rates and completion.
Pregnancy can trigger a first depressive episode or recurrence of depression for some women. Depressive symptoms of pregnant and post partum women do not differ much from those of depressed women at other …
Competing interests None.