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Title: Single motherhood versus poor partner relationship: outcomes for antenatal mental health.
Austin Authors: Bilszta, Justin L C;Tang, Melissa;Meyer, Denny;Milgrom, Jeannette ;Ericksen, Jennifer ;Buist, Anne 
Affiliation: Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Issue Date: 1-Jan-2008
Publication information: The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry; 42(1): 56-65
Abstract: In the transition to parenthood, lack of social support significantly impacts on maternal mood. This paper compares the influence of single-mother status and level of partner support in a partnered relationship, on antenatal emotional health.Antenatal demographic, psychosocial and mental health data, as determined by Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) score, were collected from 1578 women. The association between these variables, and marital status, was investigated using logistic regression.Sixty-two women (3.9%) were identified as single/unpartnered. Elevated EPDS scores (>12) were found in 15.2% (240/1578) of the total cohort and 25.8% (16/62) of the single/unpartnered women. EPDS scores were significantly lower for single/unpartnered women than for women with unsupportive partners (8.9+/-5.3 vs 11.9+/-6.5, p<0.001). Compared to the partnered cohort, single/unpartnered women were more likely to have experienced >or=2 weeks of depression before the current pregnancy (p<0.05), a previous psychopathology (p<0.001), emotional problems during the current pregnancy (p<0.01) and major life events in the last year (p<0.01). Binary logistic regression modelling to predict antenatal EPDS scores suggests that this is mediated by previous psychiatric history (p<0.001) and emotional problems during pregnancy (p=0.02).Women in a partnered-relationship with poor partner-derived support were at an increased risk of elevated antenatal EPDS scores compared to single/unpartnered women. A previous history of depression and current emotional problems, rather than single mother status, were significant risk factors for elevated EPDS scores. The present study reiterates the contribution of psychosocial risk factors as important mediators of antenatal emotional health.
Gov't Doc #: 18058445
DOI: 10.1080/00048670701732731
ORCID: 0000-0002-4082-4595
Journal: The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: Adolescent
Cohort Studies
Conflict (Psychology)
Cross-Sectional Studies
Depression, Postpartum.diagnosis.epidemiology.psychology
Depressive Disorder.diagnosis.epidemiology.psychology
Life Change Events
Middle Aged
Personality Inventory
Pregnancy Complications.diagnosis.epidemiology.psychology
Prenatal Care.statistics & numerical data
Prospective Studies
Risk Factors
Single Parent.psychology.statistics & numerical data
Social Support
Socioeconomic Factors
Appears in Collections:Journal articles

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