Updated: Jun 13
2020, university called for early intervention, vital to identify high-risk conditions, and treat women with PTSD.
In the past research on PTSD has been based on military veterans. Maternal PTSD is not fully acknowledge or supported in health care. City University of London researchers (2020) found a total of 24267 women had reported the prevalence of PTSD during pregnancy or after birth using a diagnostic measure.
Up to 700,000 women give birth each year in UK. prevalence is assumed to be 4%. (approximately 28,000 women could be affected). High-risk women at 6%, from severe complications during pregnancy or birth; preterm births and intensive care is estimated to be 4% and 6% of births (42,000 women affected yearly).
” This is a huge number of affected families and couples and much needs to be done to not only raise awareness of this disorder but also increase mental health provision for mothers during pregnancy and after birth as this prevents a very real public health challenge”. Professor Susan Ayers, Professor of Maternal and Child Health at City, University of London
Higher after birth, at 18.5% in high risk samples; triggering new episode of PTSD or exacerbating existing PTSD present in pregnancy. Childbirth might trigger women with a history of trauma and prior PTSD, re-occurring in the after birth period. Reasons cited as coping with a new baby and sleep deprivation.