The relationship of maternal-fetal attachment and depression with social support in pregnant women referring to health centers of Tabriz-Iran, 2016

J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2018 Sep;31(18):2450-2456. doi: 10.1080/14767058.2017.1344961. Epub 2017 Jul 6.


Purpose: The objective of this study was to determine the relationship of maternal-fetal attachment and depression during pregnancy with social support.

Methods: This cross-sectional study was done on 287 primipara women. The data collection tools used included a demographic characteristics questionnaire, Maternal-Fetal Attachment Scale, the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and the Social Support Scale. Pearson's correlation test and general linear model were used for data analysis.

Results: The mean maternal-fetal attachment score was 90.0 (SD: 10.3). The highest score was obtained in the "role taking" domain and the lowest in the "interaction with the fetus" domain. The mean depression score was 8.5 (SD: 4.0). The score of perceived social support was 135.5 (SD: 15.6). Pearson's correlation test showed a significant positive correlation between social support and maternal-fetal attachment (r = 0.36, p < .001) and a significant negative correlation between social support and depression (r= -0.14, p = .018).

Conclusion: The present study found a significant relationship between maternal-fetal attachment, depression and social support. It is recommended to devise plans for increasing the support given to women and to improve the society's and families' awareness about these issues in the attempt to have healthy mothers and thereby healthy families and communities.

Keywords: Iran; Maternal–fetal attachment; depression; social support.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Depression / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Iran / epidemiology
  • Maternal-Child Health Centers
  • Maternal-Fetal Relations / psychology*
  • Mothers / psychology*
  • Mothers / statistics & numerical data
  • Object Attachment*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / epidemiology*
  • Pregnancy Complications / psychology
  • Pregnant Women / psychology
  • Social Support*
  • Young Adult