Acceptance and experience of treatment for postnatal depression in a community mental health setting

Michelle McCarthy, Catherine McMahon*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

49 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Our objective in this qualitative study was to investigate the acceptance and experience of treatment for postnatal depression (PND). Fifteen women who had received treatment and support from the community mental health service for PND were interviewed. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and then analyzed using the modified analytic induction method. The majority of women interviewed had reached "crisis point" before they sought and received treatment. The stigma attached to an inability to cope and being a "bad mother" emerged as the main barrier to seeking help earlier. In addition, women were unable to differentiate between "normal" levels of postpartum distress and depressive symptoms that might require intervention. Talking about their distress and experiences, both with health professionals and other mothers, was regarded as of primary importance in the recovery process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)618-637
Number of pages20
JournalHealth Care for Women International
Volume29
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2008

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