Author, Year & Country


Sample strategy and sample size

Data collection method

Analytic approach

Key findings

Bilszta et al. 2010, Australia

Qualitative, exploring experiences after having a baby, recognition of symptoms, seeking help, treatment experiences and options as well as ideal treatment

Participants (N = 40) were recruited from either outpatient depression treatment programmes or community-based mutual



Focus groups

Interpretative phenomenological analysis

Lived experiences of PPD* and associated attitudes and beliefs result in significant barriers to accessing help. Eight theme clusters were identified: expectations of motherhood, not coping and fear of failure, stigma and denial, poor mental health awareness and access, interpersonal support, baby management, seeking help, treatment experiences and relationships with healthcare professionals

Buultjens & Liamputtong, 2007, Australia



Participants (N = 10) clinically diagnosed and admitted to a mother and baby unit in a large hospital

In-depth interviews

Thematic analysis

Three themes emerged: Becoming a mother: What to expect; The birth of the baby; The experiences of the hospital stay and Perceptions of causes and experiences of PPD. Stigma is frequently attached to women who are unhappy after the birth of a child because they are not coping with the demands of motherhood or do not instantly bond with and love their baby. PPD is a terrifying and isolating experience for women

Dennis & Moloney, 2009,


Phenomenological approach

Five participants were recruited by professional and personal colleague referrals and from a poster placed in the offices of two physicians

Thematic analysis

Qualitative interviews were conducted

Four themes emerged: No idea it would happen to me, Losing myself, A bad place to be and Working through

Edhborg et al. 2005, Sweden

Grounded theory

Twenty-two women were recruited from a group of N = 224

Data were analysed using the constant comparative method and coded on three levels.

Data were collected by means of interviews in the family home

The results showed that the new mothers struggled with life in terms of themselves, their child and their partner. They expressed feelings of loss of who they are, felt overwhelmed by responsibility for the child and struggled with feelings of abandonment, worries, and breastfeeding problems

Hall 2006, UK

Phenomenological approach

Ten women were interviewed

Interpretative phenomenological analysis.

Unstructured interviews were conducted

The results revealed themes concerning difficulties pertaining to disclosure, telling people about their thoughts and feelings, expectations and motherhood, beliefs around being a bad mum and issues associated with attachment