Development and validation of a scale to assess social support in the postpartum period Authors
First Online: 03 March 2008 Received: 12 March 2007 Accepted: 25 October 2007 DOI:
Cite this article as: Hopkins, J. & Campbell, S. Arch Womens Ment Health (2008) 11: 57. doi:10.1007/s00737-008-0212-5 Summary
The development, reliability, and validity of a new instrument designed to assess aspects of social support specifically relevant to the postpartum period, the Postpartum Social Support Questionnaire (PSSQ), is described. The PSSQ was administered to 126 women at 2, 4, 6, and 12 months postpartum. Results indicate that it has high test–retest reliability and internal consistency. Factor analyses suggest that the scale consists of four factors: partner support, parent support, in-law support, and extended-family and friends support. In addition, the PSSQ scores of depressed and nondepressed women were compared at 2, 4, 6, and 12 months postpartum. Women who met diagnostic criteria for depression at 2 months postpartum reported less partner support than the nondepressed women at each assessment. The instrument appears to be a valid and reliable measure that should be useful in studies examining the role of social support in postpartum adaptation.
Keywords: Postpartum depression; social support
Correspondence: Joyce Hopkins, Institute of Psychology, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, IL 60106, U.S.A.
References Bernazzani, O, Conroy, S, Marks, MN, Siddle, KA, et al. 2004 Contextual assessment of the maternity experience: development of an instrument for cross-cultural research Br J Psychiatry 184 s24 s30 CrossRef Campbell, SB, Cohn, JF 1991 Prevalence and correlates of postpartum depression in first-time mothers J Abnorm Psychol 100 594 599 PubMed CrossRef Campbell, SB, Cohn, JF 1997 The timing and chronicity of postpartum depression: implications for infant development Murray, L Cooper, PJ eds. Postpartum depression and child development Guilford Press New York 165 197 Campbell, SB, Cohn, JF, Flanagan, C, Popper, S, et al. 1992 Course and correlates of postpartum depression during the transition to parenthood Dev Psychopathol 4 29 47 Cohen, S 2004 Social relationships and health Am Psychol 59 676 684 PubMed CrossRef Collins, NL, Dunkel-Schetter, C, Lobel, M, Scrimshaw, SC 1993 Social support in pregnancy: psychosocial correlates of birth outcomes and postpartum depression J Pers Soc Psychol 65 1243 1258 PubMed CrossRef Cutrona, CE 1982 Nonpsychotic postpartum depression: a review of recent research Clin Psychol Rev 2 487 503 CrossRef Cutrona, CE 1984 Social support and stress in the transition to parenthood J Abnorm Psychol 93 378 390 PubMed CrossRef Cutrona, CE 1990 Stress and social support: in search of optimal matching J Soc Clin Psychol 9 3 14 Cutrona, CE, Russell, R 1990 Type of social support and specific stress: toward a theory of optimal matching Sarason, BR Sarason, IG Pierce, GR eds. Social support: an interactional view Wiley New York 319 367 Cutrona, CE, Troutman, BR 1986 Social support, infant temperament, and parenting self-efficacy: a mediational model of postpartum depression Child Dev 57 1507 1518 PubMed CrossRef Demyttenaere, K, Lenaerts, H, Nijs, P, Van Assche, FA 1995 Individual coping style and psychological attitudes during pregnancy predict depression levels during pregnancy and during postpartum Acta Psychiatr Scand 91 95 102 PubMed CrossRef Endicott, J, Spitzer, RL 1978 A diagnostic interview: the schedule for affective disorders and schizophrenia Arch Gen Psychiatry 35 837 844 PubMed Hollingshead, AB 1975Four-factor index of social status. Unpublished manual Department of Sociology, Yale University New Haven, Conn Hopkins, J, Campbell, SB, Marcus, M 1987 Role of infant-related stressors in postpartum depression J Abnorm Psychol 96 237 241 PubMed CrossRef Leadbeater, BJ, Linares, O 1992 Depressive symptoms in Black and Puerto Rican adolescent mothers in the first 3 years postpartum Dev Psychopathol 4 451 468 CrossRef Leung, SS, Martinson, IM, Arthur, D 2005 Postpartum depression and related psychosocial variables in Hong Kong Chinese women: findings from a prospective study Res Nurs Health 28 27 38 PubMed CrossRef O’Hara, MW 1986 Social support, life events, and depression during pregnancy and the puerperium Arch Gen Psychiatry 43 569 573 PubMed O’Hara, MW, Swain, AM 1996 Rates and risk of postpartum depression: a meta-analysis Int Rev Psychiatry 8 37 54 CrossRef O’Hara, MW, Rehm, LP, Campbell, SB 1983 Postpartum depression: a role for social network and life stress variables J Nerv Ment Dis 171 336 341 PubMed CrossRef Paykel, ES, Emms, EM, Fletcher, J, Rassaby, ES 1980 Life events and social support in puerperal depression Br J Psychiatry 136 339 346 PubMed Ritter, C, Hobfoll, SE, Lavin, J, Cameron, CP, Hulsizer, MR 2000 Stress, psychosocial resources, and depressive symptomatology during pregnancy in low-income, inner-city women Health Psychol 19 576 585 PubMed CrossRef Spitzer, R, Endicott, J, Robins, E 1975 Clinical criteria for psychiatric diagnosis and DSM-III Am J Psychiatry 132 1187 1192 PubMed Spitzer, RL, Endicott, J, Robins, E 1978 Research diagnostic criteria: rationale and reliability Arch Gen Psychiatry 35 773 782 PubMed