Dependent personality as a correlate of postpartum anxiety and depression among Igbo nursing mothers in Enugu, South-east Nigeria
Nursing mothers may be at higher risk for depression and anxiety during postpartum due to the additional burden. Ostensibly, some women adjust less easily than others to this additional burden, and this could be attributed to some maladaptive traits and psychological factors. This study aimed to assess dependent personality as a correlate of postpartum anxiety and depression among Igbo nursing mothers, in their 6th to 14th weeks postpartum, in two tertiary hospitals in Enugu, south-east Nigeria. Self-report measures of the variables, namely, Dependent Personality Questionnaire (DPQ), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), and Socio-demographic Questionnaire (SDQ), were used to collect data. Age range of participants was 20 - 46 years, and M = 29.65, SD = 4.87 years). Most of the
respondents were graduates of tertiary educational institutions (74.1%). The prevalence of postpartum anxiety and depression were 30.1% and 33.3% respectively, with a co-morbidity of 22%. There was a weak negative correlation between dependent personality and postpartum anxiety, r(98) = -.215, p<.01, whereas there was no significant correlation between dependent personality and postpartum depression. It was suggested that dependent personality may not be strongly associated with postpartum anxiety and depression among the nursing mothers which may be explained by other moderator variables that need further investigation.