Assessment of the risk of postpartum depression and the support expected and received by women within a year of giving birth

Original Article, Pol J Public Health 2021;131: 62-66

Edyta Gałęziowska1, Karolina Kicińska2,
Zdzisława Szadowska-Szlachetka1, Renata Domżał-Drzewicka

1 Department of Oncology and Environmental Health, Faculty of Health Science, Medical University of Lublin, Poland

2 Graduate of Medical University of Lublin, Poland

DOI_disc_logo 10.2478/pjph-2021-0012

© 2021 Medical University of Lublin. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonComercial-No Derivs licence (


Introduction. Postpartum depression (post-natal depression, pure postpartum depression, PPD) is one of three types of post­ natal mood disorders. The degree (severity) of this disorder may be defined as moderate or severe. A milder form of depression is postpartum sadness (baby blues), while the untreated depression can develop into a very severe form of depression called postpartum psychosis.

Aim. The aim of the work was to analyse the incidence and severity of postpartum depression symptoms in women in the first year after giving birth, evaluated by the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale, and the social support received and expected by them.

Material and methods. This paper presents the severity of depressive symptoms in 150 women measured by the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale in the first year after their giving birth as well as the support received by them and the demand for it. Results. More than half of the women filling in the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale achieved a result indicating a high risk of postpartum depression (more than 12 points). The severity of postpartum depression symptoms depended on the place of residence of women, was related to attendance antenatal classes, breastfeeding and the support received.

Conclusions. It would be advisable to initially assess the risk of postpartum depression in women immediately after childbirth and the social support available to them.

Keywords: postpartum depression, Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale, social support.

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