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Br J Psychiatry. 1999 Dec;175:554-8.

Post-partum depression and the mother-infant relationship in a South African peri-urban settlement.

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1
Department of Psychology, University of Reading.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Post-partum depression in the developing world has received little research attention, and its association with disturbances in the mother-infant relationship is unknown.

AIMS:

To determine the prevalence of post-partum depression and associated disturbances in the mother-infant relationship in Khayelitsha, a South African peri-urban settlement.

METHOD:

The mental state of 147 women who had delivered two months previously was assessed, and the quality of their engagement with their infants was determined.

RESULTS:

The point prevalence of DSM-IV major depression was found to be 34.7%. Maternal depression was associated with poor emotional and practical support from the partner. It was also associated with insensitive engagement with the infants.

CONCLUSIONS:

The rate of post-partum depression in Khayelitsha was around three times that found in British post-partum samples, and these depressions were strongly associated with disturbances in the mother-infant relationship.

PMID:
10789353
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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