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Original Papers

Exploring the relationship between depression and marital satisfaction amongst pregnant women residing in southern Sri Lanka

Authors:

B. L. E. Jayasinha ,

University of West London, GB
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B. N. Perera

University of West London, GB
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Abstract

Background

Maternal mental health is considered a global health priority, but despite this, there are still many limitations in addressing issues related to maternal mental health in Sri Lanka. Depression is the most commonly occurring psychiatric disorder among pregnant mothers, and is associated with an increased risk of suicide. Maternal suicides have increased in recent years, with a rate of 12.1 per 100,000 live births in 2010. There is a pressing need to explore the factors that influence the mental well-being of pregnant mothers.

 

Aims

The aim of this study was to explore the relationship between antenatal depression and marital satisfaction.

 

Methods

A questionnaire-based survey was conducted among 203 pregnant mothers who presented to 10 maternity clinics in the Galle Municipal area. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and the Revised Dyadic Adjustment Scale were used to assess for depression and the level of marital satisfaction, respectively.

 

Results

A total of 42.9% of participants screened positive for antenatal depression, while 5.9% reported having ideas of self-harm or thoughts of suicide. A statistically significant weak negative correlation was detected, between marital satisfaction and antenatal depression. Lack of support from the husband was identified as significant predictor of depression amongst pregnant mothers.

 

Conclusions

The importance of a screening program for antenatal depression and the need for a directed focus on maternal mental health is highlighted in this study. Evidence-based, culturally sensitive mental health interventions would play a significant role in detecting and minimizing maternal mental illnesses, which is likely to help to reduce maternal suicides and minimize associated far-reaching negative impacts.
How to Cite: Jayasinha, B.L.E. and Perera, B.N., 2019. Exploring the relationship between depression and marital satisfaction amongst pregnant women residing in southern Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka Journal of Psychiatry, 10(1), pp.4–10. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljpsyc.v10i1.8193
Published on 18 Jun 2019.
Peer Reviewed

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