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Perinatal mental health conditions

CPD Hours



Mental health
Community and primary health care
Midwifery and child health
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Perinatal mental health refers to mental health conditions experienced by mothers and fathers during pregnancy (antenatal) and after pregnancy (postpartum). The latest available research suggests that in Australia, 1 in 5 mothers of children under 24 months of age have been diagnosed with depression, and 1 in 10 fathers experience postnatal depression.  New parents are also at high risk for other mental health conditions including anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Learning Objective

At the end of this module participants will be able to:

  • Identify and describe the mental health conditions that may affect women and men in the perinatal period.
  • Highlight risk factors for perinatal mental health conditions.
  • Perform a routine psychosocial assessment and understand pathways for follow-up and referral.
  • Describe psychosocial supports that may be useful for patients with risk factors and/or mild symptoms of a perinatal mental health condition, including non-directive counselling and motivational interviewing.
  • Be familiar with psychological therapies and pharmacological treatments that may be recommended for patients with moderate to severe symptoms.

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