Postpartum Stressors: A Content Analysis

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A qualitative content analysis was conducted on narratives written by 127 mothers at four to six weeks postpartum. This study aimed to identify and compare postpartum stressors to the Tennessee Postpartum Stress Scale (TPSS). The TPSS is a guide to common postpartum stressors and an instrument to assess postpartum stress. Most participants in this study were white (91%), married (72%), and not working (70%). Eighteen stressor categories aggregated into two themes: Stressors Arising within the Maternal-Newborn Dyad and Stressors External to the Maternal- Newborn Dyad. Sixteen of 20 items on the TPSS were identified in the narratives. No stressor categories outside the TPSS were identified.