Online Program

Risk Factors of Maternal Mental Health and Parenting functioning: My Sister's Keeper

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Meifang Chen, M.P.H., B.S.N., CHES, Department of Health Behavior, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL
Susan L. Davies, PhD, School of Public Health/Department of Health Behavior, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL
Scott Snyder, PhD, Department of Human Studies, School of Education, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham
Robin Gaines Lanzi, PhD, MPH, Department of Health Behavior, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL
Background: Maternal mental health is an urgent public health problem, not only for the adverse physical, social and emotional effects it has on mothers, but for the tremendous deleterious effects it has on their children. Living in disadvantaged neighborhood is associated with adverse mental health; however, it is not clear how it affects on maternal mental health and parenting functioning yet.

Methods: A survey formative study to identify factors that predict maternal mental health and parenting functioning was conducted among female residents in West End Community, a disadvantaged community in Birmingham, in 2013. Descriptive statistics and multiple linear regressions were conducted. 

Results: Among 179 participants, 100% were African American, with mean age of 43.3(SD=14.5, range=20-87), 14.5% employed, 81% married/living with partner, 78% low income(<$20,000), 64% ≤high school education, 38% having insurance with mental-health referrals/treatment covered, and average depression symptom score of 8.3(SD=7.023) on a 0-24 scale. Education(p=.006) and financial difficulties(p=.008) had significant influence on coping self-efficacy. Childhood family experience(e.g. family environment and relationship with family members) had significant influence on coping(p=.001), depression coping(p=.017), and parenting(p<.0001) self-efficacies. Current stress experience (e.g. worries, daily bad experience, bad neighborhood experience) had significant influence on coping(p<.0001) and depression coping(p=.045) self-efficacies, and parenting functions (parenting self-efficacy(p=.005) and positive parenting practices(p=.015)). Social perceptions(e.g. perceived support, responsibility, being African American) had significant impact on coping self-efficacy (p<.0001) and parenting functions(parenting self-efficacy(p=.015) and positive parenting practices(p=.041)).

Conclusion: Among women living in disadvantaged community, their childhood family experience, current stress experience and social perceptions have important roles in predicting maternal mental health and parenting functioning.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the mental health condition and parenting functioning among women who are living in disadvantaged/disordered communities. Identify the factors that predict maternal mental health and women's parenting functioning in disadvantaged and/or disordered communities.

Keyword(s): Mental Health, Maternal and Child Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have obtained professional training in nursing, health behavior and health promotion in social science context. I have learned research methodologies and theories. My primary research interests lie in health promotion and health program evaluation. Areas of particular interest include maternal and child health and health disparity. I have working experience as RN with mothers and children, and have research experience with several grant programs that improve maternal and child health.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.