Mar 23 2005
A recent study showed that low-income single mothers have a very high prevalence of depressive symptoms. This research, led by Ann Peden, ARNP, BC, DSN at the University of Kentucky College of Nursing was focused on 205 volunteer women with children between the ages of 2 and 6 who were at high risk for depression.
Participants’ survey results showed that more than 75% scored in the mild to high range of depressive symptoms based on well-know measurement scales. Results support previous research in this area that low- income single mothers reported a high level of depressive symptoms including negative thinking and chronic stressors. The resulting depression could interfere with their ability to parent, seek education and employment as well as significantly affect the entire families’ quality of life.
This study, published in a recent issue of Journal of Nursing Scholarship suggests that with nursing intervention for depressive symptoms – particularly negative thinking – the rate at which these at-risk women develop depression could be decreased. Depression is the number one mental illness in the United States costing an estimated $44 billion with employers reporting depression as the most costly illness. Women are twice as likely as men to suffer from depression.