Research has shown the associations between maternal depressive symptoms, sleep difficulties, and parenting competences and supports the importance of social support during the post-partum period. Nevertheless, the investigation of sleep difficulties as antecedents of depressive symptoms and parenting and the exploration of perceived social support in these links is a new research topic. Using a sample of 95 mothers, the present study explored: the effects of maternal sleep difficulties on parenting stress through the mediation of depressive symptoms; and the protective role of social support in these associations. Results suggested indirect effects of maternal sleep difficulties on parenting stress through depressive symptoms that were conditioned by social support. Implications for clinical care are discussed.
- post partum depression, sleep difficulties, parenting skills, social support