- Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services
- December 2010 - Volume 48 · Issue 12: 34-41
Depressive symptoms in adolescent mothers have been associated with a variety of negative outcomes for both the adolescent mother and her child. The purpose of this article is to describe the dimensions of the Beck Depression Inventory®–II and to provide a discussion of how depression may appear in adolescent mothers. This descriptive study involved 45 adolescent mothers in a high school-based parent support program. The average score on the depression inventory for the adolescent mothers was 12.27 (SD = 8.57). One third (n = 15) of the adolescent mothers displayed depressive symptoms. All of the adolescent mothers reported experiencing increased symptoms related to loss of energy, changes in sleep patterns, changes in appetite, and tiredness/fatigue. It is important for nurses working with adolescent mothers to understand that what may be perceived as a normal adaptation to motherhood may in fact be a deeper emotional issue such as depression.
Dr. Meadows-Oliver is Assistant Professor, and Dr. Sadler is Associate Professor, Yale Child Study Center, and Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs, Yale School of Nursing, New Haven, Connecticut.
The authors disclose that they have no significant financial interests in any product or class of products discussed directly or indirectly in this activity. Research support was provided by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (1R15HD39170-01).
Address correspondence to Mikki Meadows-Oliver, PhD, MPH, RN, Assistant Professor, Yale University School of Nursing, 100 Church Street South, Suite 200, PO Box 9740, New Haven, CT 06536-0740; e-mail: .Mikki.email@example.com