Objectives: To compare the levels of postnatal depression experienced by Arab women in Jordan and the United States (USA) and the impact of social support during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Methodology: Participants were recruited through online survey links and social media channels, as well as face to face. A sample comprising 434 women in the postnatal period participated in the study that included Arab women in the USA and Jordan women, responding to a comprehensive questionnaire that encompassed inquiries about their pandemic status, demographic characteristics, postnatal depression, and social support. CES-D depression scale was used to determine the level of depression.
Findings: The depression mean score among women in the postnatal period from Jordan was 24.90±4.14 and the depression mean score among Arab women in the USA was 27.70±4.49. The prevalence of depression among Jordanian women was 52.8% and the prevalence of depression among Arab American women was 73.0%. There is a significant difference between both groups in depression during the postnatal period with more prevalence among Arab American women (t=7.64, p=.010). There are no significant differences between groups in tangible and actual social support among both groups (t=1.50, p=.127).
Conclusions: This nationwide study conducted among postnatal women in Jordan has shed light on several critical findings. Our study found that Arab women in the USA were suffering from more depression compared to Jordanian women. Moreover, our research highlighted a significant inverse relationship between social support and postnatal depression, indicating that as social support increased, levels of depression decreased among women in the postnatal period.
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