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Background: Postpartum depression is the most prevalent postpartum mental health problem. It is associated with subsequent low adherence to child healthcare. In severe depression, especially in the presence of psychotic symptoms, there is a substantial risk of suicide and of infanticide.
Aim: This study aimed to assess the prevalence, pattern and correlates of postpartum depression among women attending postnatal and infant welfare clinics at a teaching hospital in Nigeria.
Study Design: This was a cross-sectional study.
Place and duration of Study: This study was conducted at LTH, Osogbo Nigeria between September and November 2015.
Methodology: Data were obtained from 220 consenting postpartum women using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and a socio-demographic questionnaire. All respondents found to be EPDS positive for depression as well as 10% of those negative for depression were further assessed with the MINI International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI) (depression subscale). Data were analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 21. The level of statistical significance was set at a p-value of less than 0.05.
Results: Prevalence of postpartum depression was 9.5% using the MINI. Postpartum depression was significantly associated with age (χ2=4.767, p=0.035), suicidal ideation (χ2=17.292, p < 0.01), support from respondent’s partner during pregnancy (χ2= 6.593, p= 0.010), support from partner’s relatives (χ2= 4.403, p=0.036) and number of children (χ2=4.247, p=0.039). Unemployed mothers had significantly higher EPDS scores than those who were employed (F=3.020, p< 0.05).
Conclusion: The prevalence of postpartum depression is high. An increased media campaign about postpartum depression and preventive measures is urgently needed. Screening for depression throughout the perinatal period is important for early diagnosis and prompt intervention in order to improve clinical outcome.