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Health Promotion on Postpartum Depression

Health Promotion on Postpartum Depression

Postpartum depression is a silent epidemic that can often fly under the radar in many cases, particularly among teen moms who are often unaware of the risks of postpartum depression. They are also more likely to have negative feelings about their pregnancy if the mother is forced to have her baby. It is extremely common to experience postpartum anxiety, exhaustion, and sadness. This is commonly known as “baby blues.” These feelings usually pass in three to five days. If this time frame is exceeded and a person continues to feel detached or depressed for more than two weeks, they may have postpartum depression and should seek professional help. Postpartum depression, like many mental illnesses, is extremely complex and can manifest in a variety of ways. Treatment has a high success rate, especially when detected early. This makes it extremely treatable, but it is critical to educate expectant mothers, particularly adolescent expectant mothers, about the warning signs to look for.

Population Targeted

Postpartum depression can affect any new or expecting mother, but some women may be predisposed to it. Specifically, as previously stated, teen mothers. These new mothers frequently struggle to connect with and care for their children. Many stressful life events, childcare concerns, and prenatal anxiety are the main risk factors that can lead to postpartum depression. In addition to these factors, there is a family history of mood disorders or other impulsive disorders. (2018) Anokye et al. Furthermore, many new young mothers do not have a support system at home. Young women are having children before they are emotionally and financially prepared, which causes them a great deal of stress and weighs heavily on their emotions. Many of these women’s parents abandon them, leaving them with nowhere to go. As a result, they are leaving a pregnant adolescent to care for not only herself but also her child. This paper’s primary target population is expecting adolescent mothers. Because of the likelihood of experiencing any of the previously mentioned stressors, this large population of new mothers is at a higher risk of developing postpartum depression.

Statistical Results Postpartum depression was not recognized until the 1980s, and many women went undiagnosed as a result. It is now estimated that ten to twenty percent of new mothers will suffer from postpartum depression. However, this figure does not include women who miscarry or have stillbirths. The treatment’s success rate is around 80%, making it extremely treatable for anyone who needs to heal (Carberg, 2019). According to research, the majority of cases occur in young women aged fifteen to nineteen. Though research on postpartum depression, in general, is extensive, research on postpartum depression in teen mothers is not. Furthermore, women aged fifteen to nineteen who have a history of major mental illness such as depression, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia are three times more likely to develop postpartum depression than adolescents who have no history of mental illness. This is attributed to the impulsivity associated with these mental disorders (Reese, 2018). Any of these disorders can make healthy parenting even more difficult. However, there are numerous resources available to any new teen mum in need of assistance.

Public Health Promotion

Routine activities and proper nutrition are examples of health promotion activities that can help improve a person’s current health. Women’s lives undergo numerous significant changes in the year following childbirth. A woman’s hormonal and physiological changes are accompanied by numerous psychosocial changes. This includes taking care of her new baby and her family. A healthy postpartum period would include not only physical recovery but also the woman’s ability to successfully transition into motherhood. A woman can achieve a healthy postpartum period in four ways. These four things improve their ability to use self-efficacy, mobilize social support, employ positive coping strategies, and set realistic goals (Fahey & Shenassa, 2013). Supporting adolescent mental health issues will increase opportunities to prevent postpartum depression and lower the rate of adolescent pregnancy. In Rhode Island, a program called REACH was established to reduce the incidence of postpartum depression and to educate teen mothers on how to care for their new children. Adolescents are educated through one-on-one sessions, videos, role-playing, exercises, and homework in this program. Pregnant teenagers can learn about what is expected of them as mothers through this study. These teenagers will also work on their stress management expectations, support systems, communication skills, healthy relationships, goal setting, and psychosocial resources. Furthermore, this program can assist teens in distinguishing between the common ‘baby blues’ and depression (Reese, 2018). Raising awareness among teenagers can help educate them on the risk factors and help them recognize the signs of postpartum depression sooner rather than later.


Many women, particularly young women, go undiagnosed with postpartum depression. These women are suffering unnecessarily because it is entirely preventable and treatable. As previously stated, it is normal for new mothers to experience a wide range of emotions shortly after giving birth, but with the proper education and tools, it becomes much easier to distinguish between the two. According to statistics, teenage women between the ages of fifteen and nineteen are the most likely to experience postpartum depression. When the young expecting mother has a pre-existing mental health disorder, the chances of this happening increase even more. There are numerous resources available to women in general, but especially to young women. Some of these include teaching pregnant teen moms how to be mothers by caring for their new babies while also taking care of themselves. Education and awareness reduce an individual’s risk of postpartum depression because they learn not only how to identify the warning signs but also how to try to prevent it entirely, and if that does not work, treatment is always available.


Anokye, R., Acheampong, E., Budu-Ainooson, A., Obeng, E. I., & Akwasi, A. G. (2018). Prevalence of postpartum depression and interventions utilized for its management. Annals of general psychiatry, 17, 18.

Carberg, J. (2019, May 3). Statistics on Postpartum Depression – Postpartum Depression Resources. Retrieved March 2020, from Fahey, J.O. and Shenassa, E. (2013), Understanding and Meeting the Needs of Women in the Postpartum Period: The Perinatal Maternal Health Promotion Model. Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health, 58: 613-621. doi:10.1111/jmwh.12139

Office of Women’s Health. (May 14, 2019) Postpartum Depression. Retrieved March 2020, from depression

Reese, D. (2018, March 14). The Mental Health of Teen Moms Matters. Retrieved 2020, from matters


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Response 1 Please respond to this discussion. Great post!

The population I chose to discuss was postpartum mothers developing postpartum depression. A common gap in healthcare in this population is how mothers are not seen in the OB office until their 6-week follow-up appointment after birth. For some mothers, postpartum depression symptoms can already be beginning by then. There was a study conducted that had mothers set up both a 2-week and 6-week postpartum appointment. Results showed that although not everyone attended the 2-week appointment, with those that did, there were benefits to checking up on the patient’s mood earlier (Pluym, et al., 2021). Next, it is crucial all hospitals use a screening tool device as well as educate on signs and symptoms of postpartum depression and anxiety.

Health Promotion on Postpartum Depression

Health Promotion on Postpartum Depression

Some of the other determinants of this population include mothers who speak English as their second language. To help with this issue in healthcare, the proper language of screening tools needs to be utilized as well as translators. Understanding cultural norms needs to also be addressed by taking the time to talk to the patient. A study I found discussed how African American and Latino women have a 35-67% higher prevalence of developing postpartum depression (Pao, et al, 2019). Another determinant and gap in healthcare for postpartum women is economics. I found an interesting article that talks about Medicaid and depression/anxiety medication coverage postpartum. The article illustrated how with Medicaid expansion postpartum, depression/ anxiety medication coverage helped increase treatment for postpartum depression (Steenland & Trivedi, 2023).

From the readings this week, qualitative and quantitative measures were described. Some examples of quantitative measures talked about, such as the electronic health record, could relate to my population by following patients who scored high on screening tools such as the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale scores for example (Curley, 2019). Qualitative measures discussed in this week’s readings described an idea called Community Advisory Boards which I feel could benefit my population (Curley, 2019). The Community Advisory Board involves a group of people such as case managers and nurses that meet and go over patient care. Telephonic calls to the patient specifically I think would tremendously benefit my population. For example, patients who are at higher risk of developing postpartum depression such as those with a history of postpartum depression, a history of anxiety and or depression, scoring a high score on the EPDS, etc, could have healthcare personnel check in via telephone with these patients and go over education, discuss resources and schedule appointments. As future APRNs, it is crucial we help bridge the gaps for vulnerable populations!


Curley, A. L. C. (Ed). (2019). Population-based nursing. Springer.

Pao, C., Guintivano, J., Santos, H., & Meltzer-Brody, S. (2019). Postpartum depression and social support in a racially and ethnically diverse population of women. Archives of Women’s Mental Health22(1), 105–114. to an external site.

Pluym, I. D., Tandel, M. D., Kwan, L., Mok, T., Holliman, K., Afshar, Y., & Rao, R. (2021). Randomized control trial of postpartum visits at 2 and 6 weeks. American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology MFM3(4), 100363. to an external site.

Steenland, M. W., & Trivedi, A. N. (2023). Association of Medicaid Expansion With Postpartum Depression Treatment in Arkansas. JAMA Health Forum4(2), e225603. to an external site.

Response 2

The gap in healthcare for foster children is best summed up by its lack of consistency. Numerous studies have concluded that these children are at higher risk of having an undiagnosed chronic illness, asthma, diabetes, and long-term poor health outcomes. The American Academy of Pediatrics offers many scholarly journal entries on the topic that will be highlighted below.

There is a movement in advocacy for better identifying these children and implementing a 10% increase in primary care follow-ups. Reid et al. (2020) describe how a 30-week period of identification and collaboration of doctors, NPs, social workers, and foster parents led to an increase in follow-up care for children and an increase in the quality of care reported by providers. This study highlights a qualitative measure put in place that led to an improvement in care. Additionally, Smith (2021) examines the health disparity in the state of Texas regarding early access to health care for foster children. The Texas Department of Family Protective Services worked with providers to implement a full needs assessment within three days of a child entering foster care to better align with national best practice standards. This study highlights another qualitative measure put in place to shed light on this issue that other states would benefit from adopting.

I find the largest gap in healthcare for this demographic is the lack of data sharing. Greiner et al (2019) addressed this issue by implementing IDENTITY, a data-sharing interface between healthcare providers and family service professionals to help alleviate the discrepancy in information sharing for foster children. This three-year implementation process with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital streamlined communication, improved access to relevant health information that informed treatment (surgical history, allergies, immunization status, etc), and provided a place for all relevant contacts. The promising results of this study show the obvious disparity and provide qualitative and quantitative measures supporting the positive outcomes of its implementation.


Greiner, M. V., Beal, S. J., Dexheimer, J. W., Divekar, P., Patel, V., & Hall, E. S. (2019). Improving information sharing for youth in Foster Care. Pediatrics144(2).

Reid, V., Anderson, C., Elwell, J., & Meadows-Oliver, M. (2020). Improving primary care follow-up rates for youth in foster care. Pediatrics146(1_MeetingAbstract), 509–510.

Smith, V. B. (2021). A statewide approach to increasing early access to medical care for children entering Foster Care. Council on Foster Care, Adoption and Kinship Care Program.

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