Prevalence and Correlates of Paternal Postpartum Depression in Saudi Arabia

Main Article Content

Waleed A. Alghamdi
Huda Y. Alyahyawi
Saeed S. Shaaban
Rame S. Alharbi
Bassam E. Yaghmoor
Sara F. Alnajjar
Hussein M. Alshamrani

Keywords

Paternal Postpartum Depression (PPPD), Depression, Jeddah, Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale, Men’s Health

Abstract

Background and objective
Literature concerning paternal postpartum depression (PPPD) is rare. However, PPPD is a highly relevant disorder and can have a detrimental effect on the well-being of the family. Paternal care is an essential factor for infants’ mental development, and PPPD has been clearly shown to influence infants’ psychopathology and behavior later in life. This preliminary study aimed to detect the prevalence of PPPD and the correlated demographic and socioeconomic factors in fathers to newborns at the King Abdulaziz University Hospital (KAUH) in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.


Materials and methods
This was a cross-sectional study conducted at KAUH in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, between January 1, 2017 and June 25, 2018. We collected data telephonically through questionnaires based on previous studies. A PPPD cutoff score of >10 using a validated Arabic translation of the Edinburgh Postpartum Depression Scale was used. We enrolled 150 fathers with a mean age of 36.61±7.72 years in the study.


Results
The results showed that more than a quarter (27.3%) of the participants suffered from PPPD. Factors that correlate with PPPD included a weak relationship with the partner/mother (p=0.001), trouble sleeping (p=0.010), lower self-esteem (p=0.012), family-related problems (p<0.0001), work-related problems (p=0.002), work–family conflict (p<0.0001), and perceived perinatal and postpartum stress (p=0.001 and <0.0001 respectively).


Conclusions
The results confirm that PPPD is prevalent among fathers in Jeddah. Screening for and treatment of PPPD in Saudi Arabia is currently lacking, and the prevalence of PPPD according to these findings indicates that these deficiencies urgently need to be addressed. Counselling and support for managing health, family, and work issues during and after pregnancy could contribute to preventing PPPD.

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