Anxiety and Depression, and their Associated Factors among pregnant women in Palestinian refugee camps - west bank

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Abu- Iznait, Alaa
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An-Najah National University
Pregnancy is a time of physical and mental health changes that can include feelings of joy and hope. However, pregnancy can also be a stressful period featuring increase prevalence of anxiety and depression. The aim of the study : is to find out the prevalence rate of depression and anxiety among pregnant women and the related associated factors during the period of study Method: A Quantitative descriptive approach was adopted to conduct the study and data was collected during two months from end of April until end of June in (2016) from antenatal clinics in 9 refugee camps in the West Bank. The sample consisted of (327) pregnant women, who were selected through random sampling, (GAD-7) used to measure the level of anxiety, and depression (PHQ-9) Depression Scale. Results: Results showed that prevalence of depression among pregnant women was high (59.5%) (n=194) of pregnant women reported various degree of depression as follows: (34%) (n=111) of women reporting mild depression, (17.2%) (n=56) moderate depression, (6.1%) (n=20) moderate to severe depression, and (2.1%) (n=7) severe depression. The prevalence of anxiety was also high in comparison to a global result, (60.1 %)(n=196) of pregnant women had different degree of anxiety as follows : mild anxiety according to scales was (30.7%) (n=100), moderate anxiety (17.5%) (n=57), and severe anxiety was (12%) (n=39). Conclusion: Anxiety and depression during pregnancy are major health problems among reproductive aged women. Findings suggest the need for assessment of the risk for prenatal anxiety and symptoms of depression during each antenatal visit and to take measures immediately to prevent and manage them. The findings also suggest a need to study depression and anxiety in more detail by qualitative research.