Title : Perceived stress, marital satisfaction, and prenatal depression among couples with gestational diabetes mellitus
Objective: This study aimed to explore the prevalence of prenatal depression and to determine the dyadic relationship between perceived stress, marital satisfaction, and prenatal depression among pregnant women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and their partners.
Background: GDM during pregnancy is a very stressful event for couples. However, previous studies have largely focused on pregnant women, with few including their partners.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in Guangzhou, China, from 30 July to 2 December 2021. Three hundred fourteen couples with GDM completed the Perceived Stress Scale, Locke–Wallace Marital Adjustment Scale, and Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale. Dyadic analysis was conducted using the actor–partner interdependence mediation model.
Results: The prevalence of depressive symptoms was 13.4% in pregnant women with GDM and 8.3% in their partners. Regarding the actor effects, perceived stress was positively associated with prenatal depression in pregnant women with GDM and their partners, respectively, and marital satisfaction acted as a mediating role. Regarding the partner effects, paternal perceived stress was negatively associated with maternal marital satisfaction, and maternal marital satisfaction mediated the association between paternal perceived stress and maternal prenatal depression.
Conclusions: Dyadic effects of perceived stress, marital satisfaction, and prenatal depression exist in couples with GDM.
Keywords: Couple; Gestational diabetes mellitus; Marital satisfaction; Perceived stress; Prenatal depression
Audience Take Away:
- Our findings showed that partners played an essential role in the development of prenatal depression in pregnant women with GDM. In particular, paternal perceived stress could influence maternal mental health by negatively affecting maternal marital satisfaction. Future studies should develop couple-based programmes and dyadic interventions to improve the mental health of pregnant women with GDM and their partners.