alexa The Lived Experience of Postpartum Depression in Orthod
ISSN: 2167-1044

Journal of Depression and Anxiety
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Research Article

The Lived Experience of Postpartum Depression in Orthodox Jewish Women

Cheryl Zauderer*
Assistant Professor, New York Institute of Technology, USA
*Corresponding Author : Cheryl Zauderer
Assistant Professor at the New York Institute of Technology
Registered Nurse, Certified Nurse Midwife and Psychiatric Nurse
Practitioner, Private practice providing psychotherapy and
psychopharmacology, specializing in perinatal mood disorders
E-mail: [email protected], [email protected]
Received February 21, 2012; Accepted March 21, 2012; Published March 23, 2012
Citation: Zauderer C (2012) The Lived Experience of Postpartum Depression in Orthodox Jewish Women. J Depress Anxiety 1:112. doi:10.4172/ 2167-1044.1000112
Copyright: © 2012 Zauderer C. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


The purpose of this study was to gain an understanding of postpartum depression as experienced by Orthodox Jewish women. Using a phenomenological approach, a sample of twelve Orthodox Jewish women who had experienced postpartum depression within five years, (with the exception of one participant who had experienced postpartum depression 13 years prior) preceding data collection were interviewed. A diagnosis of postpartum depression had been made by a mental health professional. The women reported common symptoms such as disconnect from reality and having difficulty eating and sleeping. Some of the participants also reported having frightening and suicidal thoughts. The participants expressed the importance of family and community support in relieving their symptoms. The interviewees stated that anti-depressant medications and therapy were most helpful in overcoming their condition. Many-reported feeling a stigma attached to postpartum depression and insufficient awareness in Orthodox Jewish communities. Analysis of the participants’ responses revealed the following themes: (a) Orthodox perceptions of postpartum depression; (b) post-birth support; (c) postpartum depression symptoms; and (d) types of treatment.

Postpartum depression in Orthodox Jewish women is a disorder that negatively affects Orthodox Jewish women and their families. Health care professionals can play a key role in assisting this population of women through proper screening, education and support for the women, their families and the communit

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