Trends in depression among low-income mothers in the United States, 2005–2015

Sehun Oh, Christopher P. Salas-Wright, Michael George Vaughn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Background: Prior research has examined the association between low-income status and maternal depression; however, important questions remain in terms of trends in the prevalence of major depressive episodes (MDE) and treatment seeking among mothers in the United States. The objective of the present study is to examine trends in MDE among low-income mothers and explore perceived barriers to mental health treatment seeking. Methods: Using data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH; 2005–2015), we examined the prevalence of past-year MDE among mothers living in poverty (0–99% federal poverty line [FPL]; n = 23,264) and near-poverty (100–200% FPL; n = 21,655). Consistent with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, we conducted survey-adjusted logistic regression analyses to examine the significance of survey year in relation to MDE while controlling for key social demographic correlates. Results: The overall decreasing MDE trend was found only among mothers in near-poverty, not mothers in poverty. Only for mothers in poverty, financial (AOR = 0.70, 95% CI = 0.52–0.95) and information barriers (AOR = 0.53, 95% CI = 0.39–0.73) were associated with mental health service use. Limitations: Self-reports of depressive symptoms and service receipt may have led to over or underreporting due to recall or social desirability bias. Additionally, NSDUH data are cross-sectional and thereby limit our ability to make causal inferences. Conclusions: Greater attention should be paid to the prevention/treatment of depression among mothers in poverty. Efforts may include expanding financial assistance for mental health service use and educational campaigns to increase awareness of services available.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-75
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
Volume235
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Aug 1

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Poverty
Mothers
Depression
Mental Health Services
Social Desirability
Aptitude
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (U.S.)
Self Report
Mental Health
Therapeutics
Logistic Models
Regression Analysis
Demography
Guidelines
Health
Research
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Surveys and Questionnaires

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

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title = "Trends in depression among low-income mothers in the United States, 2005–2015",
abstract = "Background: Prior research has examined the association between low-income status and maternal depression; however, important questions remain in terms of trends in the prevalence of major depressive episodes (MDE) and treatment seeking among mothers in the United States. The objective of the present study is to examine trends in MDE among low-income mothers and explore perceived barriers to mental health treatment seeking. Methods: Using data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH; 2005–2015), we examined the prevalence of past-year MDE among mothers living in poverty (0–99{\%} federal poverty line [FPL]; n = 23,264) and near-poverty (100–200{\%} FPL; n = 21,655). Consistent with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, we conducted survey-adjusted logistic regression analyses to examine the significance of survey year in relation to MDE while controlling for key social demographic correlates. Results: The overall decreasing MDE trend was found only among mothers in near-poverty, not mothers in poverty. Only for mothers in poverty, financial (AOR = 0.70, 95{\%} CI = 0.52–0.95) and information barriers (AOR = 0.53, 95{\%} CI = 0.39–0.73) were associated with mental health service use. Limitations: Self-reports of depressive symptoms and service receipt may have led to over or underreporting due to recall or social desirability bias. Additionally, NSDUH data are cross-sectional and thereby limit our ability to make causal inferences. Conclusions: Greater attention should be paid to the prevention/treatment of depression among mothers in poverty. Efforts may include expanding financial assistance for mental health service use and educational campaigns to increase awareness of services available.",
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Trends in depression among low-income mothers in the United States, 2005–2015. / Oh, Sehun; Salas-Wright, Christopher P.; Vaughn, Michael George.

In: Journal of Affective Disorders, Vol. 235, 01.08.2018, p. 72-75.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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