Mom Needed for a Postpartum OCD Study

Becoming a mother should be one of the happiest moments in a woman’s life. Unfortunately, many women suffer from perinatal mood and anxiety disorders beginning in pregnancy through the first year postpartum.

Postpartum Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is becoming more widely studied because of the potential ethical and legal consequences. Some women have intrusive thoughts of harming their child, which may result in increased and unintended contacts with the legal system. These women fear that if they discuss these thoughts with a health provider, they will be reported to Child Protective Services as they may be at risk of harming their child.

However, in reality, women with postpartum OCD are not at increased risk of harming their newborn because these women tend to avoid physical contact with their child or engage in rituals in order to prevent acting upon their intrusive thoughts. Nevertheless, these fears may decrease the likelihood that women with postpartum OCD will seek treatment when they most need it.

Moms Needed for a Postpartum OCD Study

To date, there is limited knowledge of this potential intersection among consumers, health providers, and policy makers in addressing postpartum OCD. The purpose of our study is to understand mothers’ experiences with postpartum mood and anxiety disorders, especially postpartum OCD. Our long term goal is to create more awareness and educate health practitioners and policy makers in how to address postpartum mood and anxiety disorders. The study is conducted by a student researcher and a psychologist/associate professor from The George Washington University.

If you’re interested in participating, you will be asked to complete an online survey about your experiences, and possibly participate in a follow-up phone interview. As a thank you for your time, you will receive a $10 gift card for your participation.

Edited March 2, 2016: We would like to thank all the courageous and wonderful women who helped us further understand postpartum depression, anxiety, and OCD by completing our online survey. We are extremely grateful for your participation in the research study. At this point, the survey has been closed.