Save when you register for the whole learning series: Stress & the Infant: Infant Mental Health

Understanding Maternal Depression

This class has ended.

Date: Friday, July 19, 2013

Course #: W450

Time: 9 a.m. - Noon

Cost: $90

Credit Available: 0.3 CEUs; 3 SWCEUs; Approved by Illinois Early Intervention Training Program for 3 contact hours in the area of Working with Families


Postpartum depressive disorders exist on a spectrum of severity from postpartum blues to psychosis. Often, postpartum anxiety can accompany postpartum depression, and can even be confused with it. This workshop explores diagnosis and assessment for each disorder using videos, screening tools, and case examples to enhance understanding. Maternal depression and related disorders have numerous implications for mental health and the parent-child relationship. Following discussion of the impact of maternal depression on the infant and family, participants will explore an overview of treatment approaches found to be effective in managing the disorder and repairing the mother-child relationship.


Tracy E. Moran, Ph.D.

Professor Moran earned her doctorate in clinical psychology at the University of Iowa and did postgraduate work at Tulane University before joining the Erikson faculty in 2009. She specializes in early childhood mental health.

In addition to being a professor, Moran is a clinical psychologist at the Center for Children and Families at Erikson. Her research has focused on the efficacy and outcomes of mental health and social services provided to neglected and abused children. She also studies parenting self-efficacy and is currently developing more sensitive screening tools to measure parents' views of their own competence. These screening instruments can be useful to professionals providing support to parents in a wide range of settings, from home visits to abuse and neglect cases. They also may help illuminate the relationship between depression and parental self-efficacy and provide another clue for spotting postpartum depression. Moran also consults with the Fussy Baby Network team regarding adjustment to parenthood and postpartum mood issues.

Moran has studied the effects of maternal depression on infants and toddlers. Because current research suggests that therapies that help a mother may not protect her baby from negative impact depression, she is interested in exploring therapeutic approaches that include and benefit the infant as well as the mother. She also leads a project to refine or develop new models of psychotherapy adapted to to families' social and cultural context, to reduce barriers to treatment.

This class has ended.