Assessment: Assessment of a Social Work Tool

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¶ … Social Work Tool

Sheila is a woman who is 34 years old and a married mother of 3. Her youngest child is 6 months, and the next two years, while the oldest is aged 4 years. She is a university graduate and worked at a bank for 6 years before quitting her job to take care of her children at home. Sheila is married to Steve, who is a 36 years old lawyer. Sheila and Steve live in a well-off gated community. Sheila was an only child at her parents' home and had a stay at home mum, whom she felt contributed immensely to whom she had turned out to be. It is mainly for this reason that she resigned from her job, a few months after she had had her third child, as she wanted to give them the happiness and privilege of having a stay at home mum. Steve also happened to have been an only child, but he was of a single mother. Steve learned to be independent very early in his life and frequently took care of his mum, who was always exhausted from working 3 different jobs so that she could be able to have extra money. And Steve was also ready for Sheila to resign and be a stay-at-home mum as he went on working to provide for their family. All was fine in this family, until after Sheila gave birth to her third child, and was a short while later found with postpartum depression.

2. Theoretical Orientation

Problem: Perinatal depression (PND) is defined as a major depressive condition that occurs in the course of a pregnancy or after the adoption or birth of a baby (Reproductive Mental Health Program., 2014).

Postpartum depression is a non-psychotic mental condition that is a common complication that affects 10 to 15% of women after giving birth. The effects of postpartum depression (PPD) are well-known: for a mother, the condition can then lead to other conditions such recurrent depressions for a period of up to five years after the birth. Because of the nature of depression symptoms caused by PPD, mothers who have just given birth may risk injuring their children through delusions, command hallucinations, practical incompetence or neglect. This may cause a development delay in the child or difficulties in social interactions as the child grows (Vigod, S.N., Villegas, L., Dennis, C.L., & Ross, L.E., 2010).

Diagnosis: The symptoms and signs of the disease are often the same as those linked to major depression including low morale, anhedonia and depressed mood. Others diagnosed with the diseases have also been reported as having suicidal tendencies. Somatic symptoms linked to postpartum depression include: lack of appetite, lack of sleep, low energy and reduced libido (Vigod, S.N., Villegas, L., Dennis, C.L., & Ross, L.E., 2010).

Under the APA classification of psychological conditions, perinatal depression is a sub-category of a major depressive disorder.

The Association's DSM-V criteria for a major depressive disorder include:

I. Either anhedonia or a depressed mood must be manifested within a 14 day period

II. One of the following must also be expressed over the same 14 day period:

Difficulty in making decisions or staying focused

Feelings of low self-worth


Decrease in pleasure or interest in most activities

Lack of excitement or energy almost on a daily basis

Suicidal thoughts or plans

III. The signs and symptoms must be expressed in such a way that they disrupt normal activities or daily routines. Moreover, the signs and symptoms can be expressed any time between the pregnancy and one year after birth (Reproductive Mental Health Program., 2014).

Intervention: Treatment is often recommended based on individual factors such as:

1. The desires, resources and support of the woman.

2. The patient's previous response to treatment.

3. The severity of the symptoms

4. The nature of the depressive disorder (Reproductive Mental Health Program., 2014).

3. Problem definition and Focus of Treatment

The psychological and psychosocial interventions are frequently utilized to treat postpartum depression and can help reduce the effects of depressive symptoms by: offering information about the benefits of positive behavior to one's well being; developing positive psychological states and encouraging individual motivation, preventing maladaptive responses and behaviors and decreasing feelings of loneliness and depression (Dennis, C.L., & Dowswell, T., 2013).

Goals of the intervention:

Over the next three months, these will be the objectives:

To determine negative behavior trends and their cause… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Cite This Assessment:

APA Format

Assessment of a Social Work Tool.  (2015, November 9).  Retrieved October 17, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Assessment of a Social Work Tool."  9 November 2015.  Web.  17 October 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"Assessment of a Social Work Tool."  November 9, 2015.  Accessed October 17, 2019.