Objective: To examine the association between objectively measured physical activity and depression symptoms among a nationally representative sample of pregnant women to provide a more accurate understanding of the relationship between physical activity and depression symptoms.
Design: We employed a cross-sectional study design.
Setting: Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005-2006 were used for this study.
Methods: One-hundred and forty-one pregnant women wore an ActiGraph accelerometer for 7 days and completed the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 to assess depression status.
Results: More than 19% of the participants experienced some depression symptoms, and compared to their counterparts not having depression symptoms, they were less physically active.
Conclusion: An inverse association was found between physical activity and depression symptoms among pregnant women. When feasible, nurses are encouraged to help facilitate physical activity among pregnant women, assuming an uncomplicated pregnancy.
© 2012 AWHONN, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses.