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Prevention of postnatal mental health problems: a survey of Victorian maternal and child health nurses

Wynter, Karen, Burns, Joanna, Rowe, Heather and Fisher, Jane 2015, Prevention of postnatal mental health problems: a survey of Victorian maternal and child health nurses, Australian journal of advanced nursing, vol. 33, no. 1, pp. 29-37.

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Title Prevention of postnatal mental health problems: a survey of Victorian maternal and child health nurses
Author(s) Wynter, KarenORCID iD for Wynter, Karen orcid.org/0000-0003-4620-7691
Burns, Joanna
Rowe, Heather
Fisher, Jane
Journal name Australian journal of advanced nursing
Volume number 33
Issue number 1
Start page 29
End page 37
Total pages 9
Publisher Australian Nursing & Midwifery Federation
Place of publication Melbourne, Vic.
Publication date 2015-09
ISSN 0813-0531
1447-4328
Keyword(s) Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Nursing
prevention
postnatal depression
risk factors
primary care
UNSETTLED INFANT BEHAVIOR
ANXIETY DISORDERS
RESIDENTIAL UNIT
DEPRESSION SCALE
SLEEP PROBLEMS
AUSTRALIA
MOTHERS
COMMUNITY
WOMEN
Summary © 2015, Australian Nursing Federation. All rights reserved. Objectives To investigate Maternal and Child Health (MCH) nurses’ views on what contributes to mental health problems among new mothers, and their current practices regarding risk factors for maternal mental health problems that are potentially modifiable in primary care. Design Cross-sectional, online survey. Setting Universal MCH service offered free to all new parents in Victoria, Australia. Subjects All MCH nurses employed in full or part-time clinical practice were invited to participate. Main outcome measures MCH nurses’ views on risk factors for maternal mental health problems and for unsettled infant behaviour; and their current practice regarding addressing unsettled infant behaviour and inclusion of fathers in services. Results Surveys were completed by 343/1051 eligible MCH nurses (32.6%). Respondents identified social factors as major determinants of postnatal mental health problems among women, including: parents having limited knowledge about infant sleep needs and skills to manage unsettled infant behaviour; and lack of support, including from intimate partners. Respondents offered widely divergent advice to mothers about management of unsettled infant behaviour. They regarded the inclusion of fathers in routine services as valuable, but acknowledged practical barriers, including difficulties in offering services and programs outside conventional office hours. Conclusions MCH nurses identified risks to maternal mental health that are potentially modifiable in primary care, but face barriers in addressing these. To facilitate more consistent advice to new parents about management of unsettled infant behaviours, evidence-based guidelines and training programs should be developed. Inclusion of men in routine services would require practical barriers to be overcome.
Language eng
Indigenous content off
Field of Research 1110 Nursing
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2015, Australian Nursing Federation
Free to Read? Yes
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30129870

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Nursing and Midwifery
Open Access Collection
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.