• Journal Article

Prevalence, Trajectories, and Risk Factors for Depression Among Caregivers of Young Children Involved in Child Maltreatment Investigations

Citation

Casanueva, C., Cross, T., Ray, H., & Christ, S. L. (2011). Prevalence, Trajectories, and Risk Factors for Depression Among Caregivers of Young Children Involved in Child Maltreatment Investigations. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 19(2), 98-116.

Abstract

This study examines depression among caregivers of young children involved in investigations of child maltreatment, in terms of 12-month prevalence of depression across 5 to 6 years. Data were from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being, a national probability study of 5,501 children investigated for maltreatment. The study sample comprised 1,244 female caregivers (95.5% biological mothers) of children not placed out of home and younger than 5 years old. About a quarter of caregivers had, at any given point, a score indicating major depression in the previous 12 months; across all follow-ups, 46% of caregivers had a score indicating major depression at some point. Depression was associated with caregivers' report of intimate-partner violence and fair or poor health status. Caregivers of maltreated children are at substantial risk for depression that does not diminish over the course of 5 years. Assessing and providing assistance for intimate-partner violence and health problems may help decrease depression prevalence