Common mental disorders in women and men in the first six months after the birth of their first infant: a community study in Victoria, Australia

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Introduction Studies of postpartum mental health have focused predominantly on women and on depression. There is limited evidence regarding men s postpartum mental health and about other common mental disorders, such as anxiety and adjustment disorders, which may also be relevant at this life phase. The main aim of this study was to establish the period prevalence of depression, anxiety, and adjustment disorders in primiparous women and their male partners in the first six months postpartum Methods English-speaking couples were recruited in five local government areas in Victoria, Australia. Women and men completed separate telephone interviews which included the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and selected Depression and Anxiety modules of the Composite International Diagnostic Interview. DSM-IV criteria were used to classify adjustment disorders, based on subclinical symptoms not meeting criteria for diagnoses of major or minor depression or generalised anxiety disorder. The main outcome was any common mental disorder (depression, anxiety or adjustment disorder) in the first six months postpartum Results Complete data were available for 172 couples. The 6-month period prevalence of mental health problems was 33 for women and 17 for men. The most common diagnosis in both women and men was adjustment disorder with anxiety symptoms Limitations Unpartnered women and men, women whose partners were not willing to participate and those who did not have sufficient English fluency to complete the interviews were excluded from the sample. The results of this study cannot be generalised to these populations. Conclusion The most common postnatal mental health problem in both women and men in this community sample was anxiety. ? 2013 Elsevier B.V. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Reaxys Database Information
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)980 - 985
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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