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Type: Thesis
Title: A hermeneutic phenomenological study of women's experiences of postnatal depression and health professional intervention.
Author: Williamson, Victoria Heather
Issue Date: 2005
School/Discipline: Department of Clinical Nursing
Abstract: Much information is available through the print and other forms of media about pregnancy, parenthood, and the birth process, but significantly less information exists about postnatal depression or about how to cope with the often-painful realities of childbirth and parenting. Even less information exists about the effectiveness of caregiver intervention, especially from the point of view of womens' remembered experience. This study helps to fill the information gap identified in the literature. This is a hermeneutic phenomenological study guided by the ideas of van Manen (1990). I interviewed women who had experienced postnatal depression and health professional intervention, and asked them about their experiences. Some of the questions were, "What are the types and quality of health professional interventions provided for you by health professionals treating your postnatal depression?" "Which interventions did they use that were helpful for you, and which interventions were unhelpful?" The interviews were open-ended and tape-recorded, took one hour each, and the data was allowed to unfold naturally. The data were transcribed and analysed, then interpreted using the philosophical underpinning of phenomenology to guide my interpretation. The search for meaning in the text, and my attempts to make sense of the findings resulted in the development of two major themes, the first being Dual Reality and the second being Interventions, each theme had three sub-themes. Within the theme of Dual Reality were the sub themes of Behind the Mask, the Stresses involved in Being a New Mother, and The Depression Experience. Within the theme of Interventions were the three sub themes of Getting Help (the helpful interventions), Lack of Support, (the unhelpful interventions), and the Need for Education and More Services for Postnatal Depression (the missing interventions). The helpful and unhelpful health professional interventions were examined, some were positive and helped the women to heal from postnatal depression, and others were unhelpful (or simply absent), and the women were not assisted in their recovery. A number of recommendations are made and also suggestions for further research are included as a result of the findings of this study.
Advisor: McCutcheon, Helen
Jones, Tina
Dissertation Note: Thesis (Ph.D.)--Department of Clinical Nursing, 2005.
Keywords: postpartum depression, postpartum psychiatric disorders, postnatal care
Appears in Collections:Research Theses

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