Screening for maternal postpartum depression and associationswith personality traits and social support. A Polish follow-upstudy 4 weeks and 3 months after delivery
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Klinika Położnictwa, Katedra Perinatologii, Gdański Uniwersytet Medyczny
Instytut Psychologii, Uniwersytet Gdański
Submission date: 2016-09-16
Final revision date: 2017-01-23
Acceptance date: 2017-01-24
Online publication date: 2017-10-29
Publication date: 2017-10-29
Corresponding author
Karolina Maliszewska   

Gdański Uniwersytet Medyczny, ul. Kliniczna 1a, 80-402 Gdańsk, Polska
Psychiatr Pol 2017;51(5):889–898
To investigate the likelihood of postpartum depression and to explore maternal characteristics in terms of personality, social support and other medical and psychological data.

A sample of 548 patients was investigated 4 weeks and 3 months after delivery. They responded to questionnaires containing sociodemographic questions: the EPDS (Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale), the PHQ-9 (Patient Health Questionnaire-9), theNEO-FFI (Personality Inventory), and the BSSS (Berlin Social Support Scales).

Probable depression any time during first 3 months postpartum was prevalent among 6.38% of women, based on the following criteria: EPDS > 12 points and PHQ-9 > 9 points. A score of EPDS > 9 in the first week after delivery (ORa = 4.16; CI 1.59–10.86), a history of hospitalisation during pregnancy (ORa = 3.51; CI 1.32–9.20), a high level of neuroticism (ORa = 1.37; CI 1.05–1.77), and high buffering-protective social support (ORa =2.56; 1.25–5.23) were significantly associated with depressive symptoms. Potential protective factors were initial breastfeeding (ORa = 0.31; CI 0.11–0.90) and high satisfaction with currently received social support (ORa=0.41;CI 0.22–0.79). The total dropout rate was 23%.

New mothers who are neurotic and who suffered from physical or mental problems during pregnancy and puerperium might experience depressive symptoms more easily. They would also protect those close to them from negative information about themselves. A lack of initial breastfeeding and unsatisfactory social support played a similar role.