Postpartum Depression and Help-Seeking Behavior

Authors

  • Joanne McGarry MSPH,

    Corresponding author
      Joanne McGarry, MSPH, Utah Department of Health, P.O. Box 142001, Salt Lake City, UT 84114. E-mail: jmcgarry@utah.gov
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    • Joanne McGarry, MSPH, is the project coordinator for the Utah Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System at the Utah Department of Health, She received her MSPH from the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT.

  • Han Kim PhD, MSPH,

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    • Han S. Kim, PhD, MSPH, is an assistant professor in the Public Health Program at Westminster College, Salt Lake City, UT. Dr. Kim received his MSPH from the University of Utah and his PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Washington, Seattle, WA.

  • Xiaoming Sheng PhD,

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    • Xiaoming Sheng, PhD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT. Dr. Sheng received his PhD in Statistics from the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

  • Marlene Egger PhD,

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    • Marlene J. Egger, PhD, is a professor in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine and adjunct professor of Biomedical Informatics at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT. Dr. Egger received her BA from Knox College in Galesburg, IL, and an MS and PhD in Statistics from Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA. She received additional training in health services research and maternal and child health.

  • Laurie Baksh MPH

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    • Laurie Baksh, MPH, is the data manager for the Utah Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System at the Utah Department of Health. Laurie Baksh received her MPH from the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT.


Joanne McGarry, MSPH, Utah Department of Health, P.O. Box 142001, Salt Lake City, UT 84114. E-mail: jmcgarry@utah.gov

ABSTRACT

The objective of this analysis was to investigate the demographic differences between women who report postpartum depression symptoms (PPDS) and seek help versus those who report symptoms but who do not seek help, using data from the Utah Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) 2004 dataset. Overall, 14.7% of Utah women reported experiencing PPDS in 2004. Sixty percent of the women who reported having PPDS did not seek help Seeking help for depression during pregnancy was associated with help-seeking behavior postpartum (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 0.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.04–0.2). Other factors associated with seeking help included having an infant admitted to the intensive care unit (aOR = 0.4; 95% CI, 0.2–0.9) and rural residency (aOR = 0.3; 95% CI, 0.2–0.7). Nonwhite women were 12.1 times (95% CI, 3.0–48.5) more likely to not seek help for depression compared to white women. Further, Hispanic women (aOR = 3.2; 95% CI, 1.3–8.1) and women who experienced emotional abuse had increased odds of not seeking help (aOR = 2.9; 95% CI, 1.3–6.2). Nearly 15% of Utah women in this study reported PPDS, yet fewer than half sought help. Target populations, such as nonwhite, Hispanic, emotionally abused, and urban women, have been identified for public health interventions.

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