Women’s mental health is the aspect of health that deals with the holistic psycho- socio emotional well being of women in general in their reproductive ages. It looks at teenage females through to adult females and the aged females( female geriatric psychiatry).
Maternal mental health however is an aspect of women’s mental health that looks at the total psycho-socio emotional wellbeing of a woman from pregnancy through to a year after birth.
Mental health morbidities in pregnant women and new mothers causes suffering among them; some so severe that they may even commit suicide, affected mothers can not function properly. As a result the child's growth and development may be negatively affected as well. Maternal mental health disorders are treatable. Effective interventions can be rendered timely to remedy the situation.
Worldwide about 10% pregnant women and 13 % of women who have just given birth experience a mental disorder, primarily depression. This is higher in developing countries, 15.6% during pregnancy and 19.8% after child birth and 47% of these affected group when not treated commit suicide and 12% of babies born to these mentally unstable mothers end up being killed either through poor care giving, starvation, drowning or any other brutal form of killing.
Way forward for maternal mental health then includes; Public sensitization and awareness campaigns, Advocacy for effective policies to deal with maternal mental health issues, Appropriate support systems for families and individuals in the society, Health promotion; psychological and psychiatric screening at health facilities during Antenatal care, Strong pre and post marital counseling
SCOPE OF THE EXERCISE
The exercise would include an extensive mental health education/promotion( radio, social media, tv, public forums), physical assesments, psychological/psychiatric assessment, bio data of participants ( blood pressure check, weight, pulse rate), basic laboratory test including; blood sugar check, malaria testing, hepatitis screening, urine routine examination, priscriptions and referrals if indicated.
All hands must be on the deck to support the course of maternal mental health and mental health as a whole in Ghana and beyond.
Next maternal mental health sensitization outreach at Senya is on the 12th September 2018. Kindly send support and donations no matter how small it is to support this important project. Thanks and blessings.
Bank name : GT BANK
Account name : Country alliance on mental illness
Account number : 221104002330
Branch :abeka lapaz
Swift code : GTBIGHAC