Debt, social disadvantage and maternal depression
AbstractDepression is common among women with young children, and is strongly associated with financial adversity. Debt is a common feature of such adversity, yet its relationship with depression has not been examined before. We have used longitudinal data, collected over six months, on 271 families with young children, to examine this relationship. Multiple regression was used to identify independent predictors of the total Edinburgh Post-natal Depression Scale score from a range of socioeconomic, demographic, social support and child health related variables. Worry about debt was the strongest independent socioeconomic predictor of the depression score at both initial and follow-up occasions. To account for the possibility of reverse causation, i.e. depression causing worry about debt, alternative regression models are reported which show that owing money by itself predicts depression and earlier debt worries predicts depression six months later. We were unable to show that earlier debt worries independently predicted subsequent depression scores after the initial depression score had been taken into account in the analysis. Although debt has not been shown to be an independent prospective predictor of depression, our results suggest it has a central place in the association between socioeconomic hardship and maternal depression. Evidence from qualitative studies on poverty and from studies on the causes of depression support this hypothesis. The implications for policy are that strategies to enable families to control debt should be an explicit part of wider antipoverty measures which are designed to reduce depression and psychological distress among mothers of young children.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.
Volume (Year): 53 (2001)
Issue (Month): 4 (August)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/315/description#description
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Richard Disney & Sarah Bridges, .
"Debt and depression,"
06/02, University of Nottingham, Centre for Finance, Credit and Macroeconomics (CFCM).
- Goode, Jackie, 2012. "Brothers are doing it for themselves?: Men's experiences of getting into and getting out of debt," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(3), pages 327-335.
- Selenko, Eva & Batinic, Bernad, 2011. "Beyond debt. A moderator analysis of the relationship between perceived financial strain and mental health," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 73(12), pages 1725-1732.
- Sweet, Elizabeth & Nandi, Arijit & Adam, Emma K. & McDade, Thomas W., 2013. "The high price of debt: Household financial debt and its impact on mental and physical health," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 94-100.
- Irina Grafova, 2011. "Financial Strain and Smoking," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 327-340, June.
- Aiga, Hirotsugu, 2006. "Reasons for participation in and needs for continuing professional education among health workers in Ghana," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 77(3), pages 290-303, August.
- John Gathergood, . "Debt and Depression: Evidence on Casual Links and Social Stigma Effects," Discussion Papers 11/10, University of Nottingham, Centre for Finance, Credit and Macroeconomics (CFCM).
- Whitney Witt & Kristin Litzelman & Carmen Mandic & Lauren Wisk & John Hampton & Paul Creswell & Carissa Gottlieb & Ronald Gangnon, 2011. "Healthcare-Related Financial Burden Among Families in the U.S.: The Role of Childhood Activity Limitations and Income," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 308-326, June.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.