Predictors of Postpartum Depression among Italian Women: A Longitudinal Study

Sara Molgora, Emanuela Saita, Maurizio Barbieri Carones, Enrico Ferrazzi, Federica Facchin

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


Introduction: Postpartum depression is commonly experienced by mothers worldwide and is associated with anxiety disorders, parenting stress, and other forms of distress, which may lead to a complex illness condition. Several studies have investigated the risk factors for this disorder, including biological and socio-demographic variables, medical and obstetric factors, and psychological and relational dimensions. The present study aimed to describe the psychological status of mothers up to 12 months postpartum, and to investigate the predictors of depressive symptoms at 12 months postpartum, considering obstetric factors along with psychological and relational variables. Methods: A sample of 137 women completed a questionnaire composed of a sheet on anamnestic and obstetric information and the following scales: Wijma Delivery Experience Questionnaire; State-Trait Anxiety Inventory; Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale; Parenting Stress Index (Short Form); Dyadic Adjustment Scale; and Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support. Data were collected at four assessment times: 2–3 days, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months postpartum. Results: Findings showed that the highest percentage of women with clinically significant symptoms of anxiety (state and trait) and depression was found at 12 months postpartum, which indicated that this was the most critical time. The quality of childbirth experience and trait anxiety at three months postpartum emerged as significant predictors of postpartum depression at 12 months. Conclusion: Our findings highlight the importance of providing stable programs (such as educational programs) to mothers in the first year postpartum. Furthermore, because the quality of the childbirth experience is one of the most important predictors of PPD at 12 months postpartum, effort should be made by healthcare professionals to guarantee a positive experience to all women to reduce possible negative long-term consequences of this experience.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)1-13
Numero di pagine13
RivistaInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2022


  • Anxiety
  • Childbirth experience
  • Depression
  • Depression, Postpartum
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Longitudinal study
  • Mothers
  • Parturition
  • Postpartum Period
  • Predictors
  • Pregnancy
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • postpartum depression


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