Postnatal Depression Screening
Postpartum depression is the most common complication of childbearing Hence, the use of the 10-item self-report scale (EPDS) helps medical personnel identify patients at risk for “perinatal” depression.
The 10 items ask the mother to focus on the feelings she has experienced during the previous 7 days. The scoring of the answers provides a final score that can be interpreted concerning the likelihood of the mother suffering from a depressive illness varying severity.
- The answers to items 1, 2, and 4 are scored from 0 to 3, so the first answer is 0 points, and the last answer is 3 points.
- The answers to items 3, then 5 to 10 are reverse scored (from 3 to 0), so the first answer is awarded 3 points, and the last answer is 0 points.
- EPDS scores range from 0 to 30. The higher the score, the higher the likelihood of a depressive illness of varying severity. A cut-off of 13 points was also forwarded for depressive illness.
If you feel that you are experiencing symptoms of postnatal depression, it is recommended that you follow up with your doctor or a psychiatrist for a full assessment and evaluation.
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