Archives of Women's Mental Health

, Volume 16, Issue 5, pp 353–361

Coping strategies as psychological risk factor for antenatal anxiety, worries, and depression among Greek women

  • Kleanthi Gourounti
  • Fotios Anagnostopoulos
  • Katerina Lykeridou
Original Article


A range of psychosocial, medical, and demographic variables may influence pregnant women’s psychological status. However the association between coping strategies, anxiety, worries, and depression during pregnancy is a relatively neglected area of research. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine the relationship between coping strategies, antenatal anxiety, pregnancy worries, and depressive symptomatology after controlling for the effects of background variables. The study sample consisted of 163 pregnant women, with gestational age ranging from 11 to 26 weeks, attending antenatal screening at a Greek public hospital. Coping strategies were measured with Brief COPE, pregnancy worries were measured with Cambridge Worry Scale (CWS), anxiety was assessed using State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI-X version), and depression was measured with Center for Epidemiologic Studies—Depression scale (CES-D). Pearson’s correlation coefficients were calculated among all study variables, followed by hierarchical multiple linear regression. In the univariate analysis, low annual income, unemployment, conception after an IVF treatment, and a previous history of miscarriage were associated with anxiety, depression, and worries. Additionally, almost all coping strategies (denial, behavioral disengagement, self-blame, self-distraction, substance use, acceptance, positive reframing, active coping, and seeking emotional support) were significantly associated with antenatal anxiety, worries, and depression. Linear regression analysis showed that only previous history of miscarriage, conception after IVF, as well as denial, behavioral disengagement and acceptance coping strategies were significantly related to anxiety, worries and depressive symptomatology. The risk factors found in this study could help clinicians target anxiety and depression screening to high-risk populations of pregnant women. Provision of adequate training for obstetricians and midwives in the detection and management of anxiety and depression among pregnant women should help to decrease the psychological burden during pregnancy.


Antenatal anxiety Pregnancy worries Antenatal depression Coping strategies IVF conception 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kleanthi Gourounti
    • 1
    • 3
  • Fotios Anagnostopoulos
    • 2
  • Katerina Lykeridou
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MidwiferyTEI of AthensAthensGreece
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyPanteion UniversityAthensGreece
  3. 3.AthensGreece

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