Perinatal mental health stigma in the context of maternity care: a systematic review

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract

Maternity care professionals play an important role in the care of women with perinatal mental illness (PMI). The frequent contact that women have with midwives during pregnancy and immediately postpartum is crucial to identification of PMI. However, if women perceive negative or stigmatised attitudes towards them, they are less likely to disclose or access the services they need. This review was conducted with the aim of systematically analysing the literature surrounding the stigma of PMI in the context of maternity care. Two main themes were identified from the synthesis. 1. Practices by health care professionals which stigmatise pregnant women and new mothers who experience PMI. 2. Women with PMI experiences of stigma when cared for by maternity care professionals. Midwives hold stigmatised attitudes towards pregnant women and new mothers with PMI as evidenced in their negative responses towards women, their avoidance in enquiring about women’s mental health and the reduced support they offer women. Women with PMI experience stigma through stereotypical beliefs, through their anticipation and experiences of stigma, in the difficulties they have with disclosure and in the stigma related strategies they use to seek help. Findings from this Systematic Review suggest interventions are needed to counter stigma of PMI in maternity care.

Please send completed abstracts to Hind M Alass
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 03 May 2023
Event3rd Doctoral Collaboration Conference
QUB & UU
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Duration: 03 May 202303 May 2023

Conference

Conference3rd Doctoral Collaboration Conference
QUB & UU
Period03/05/202303/05/2023

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