Perceived Social Support as Predictor of Peripartum Mental Illness in Gilgit, Pakistan


  • Sadiq Hussain Karakoram International University
  • Anny Saeed Karakoram International University


Peripartum mental illness, significant others support, family support, friends’ support


This study was conducted to assess perceived social support as predictor of peripartum mental illness in Gilgit region of Pakistan. Peripartum mental illness was defined as antenatal and postnatal depression and anxiety while significant other’s support, family’s support, and friends’ support constituted the concept of perceived social support.  Research data were collected from 250 women of ages between 20 and 48 years (M = 28.02 & SD = 5.57) grouped into five categories: first trimester, second trimester, third trimester, four weeks postpartum, and one year postpartum. Participants’ perceived social support, depression, and anxiety were assessed using Multidimensional Perceived Social Support Questionnaire (Akhtar, et al., 2010), Patient Health Questionnaire (Ahmad, et al., 2018), and Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale (Ahmad, et al., 2018). Kruskal-Wallis test results indicated that there were insignificant differences in all levels of depression and anxiety across five categories. Depression and anxiety were significantly and negatively correlated with significant other’s and family’s support. Women’s occupation was significantly associated with both depression and anxiety; age was significantly correlated only with depression; while living area and monthly income were significantly associated with anxiety. Hierarchical regression analyses revealed that after controlling the effect of demographic variables only family’s support out of the three main variables of social support made significant and independent contribution to women’s depression and anxiety.


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