Health & Wellbeing (2020 cohort)
One-in-five women experience anxiety during pregnancy or the twelve-months following childbirth, however it is under-researched and often overlooked, particularly in the postnatal period. Longitudinal mixed-methods research will develop a comprehensive picture of postnatal anxiety, reveal the associated risk factors and triggers, and establish whether there are any predictable patterns of symptom fluctuations during the twelve-months following childbirth. In addition, the utility of a new postnatal-specific anxiety measure will be tested alongside several screening tools used in perinatal primary care to establish the most effective methods of identifying women in need of support. Finally, the association between postnatal anxiety and mother-infant interactions will be investigated to shed further light on the nature and direction of this relationship. Together findings should produce a dependable illustration of postnatal anxiety to guide future preventative and supportive interventions, and effectively target resources to reduce the prevalence, severity, and long-term implications on mother and infant wellbeing.
Prior to being awarded an ESRC studentship with the Grand Union Doctoral Training Partnership, I completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Family and Child Psychology at the University of Chester and a BSc (First class honours) in Psychology with the Open University. I have also worked with families and children in various capacities since 2007. Professional research experience has included work as a Research Assistant for the Behavioural Insights Team (a social purpose company connected to the UK Cabinet Office), and more recently, as a Research Consultant at the Open University investigating perinatal wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic. This has led to co-authoring two publications and a third is in preparation.
Harrison, V., Moulds, M. L., & Jones, K. (2021). Perceived social support and prenatal wellbeing; The mediating effects of loneliness and repetitive negative thinking on anxiety and depression during the COVID-19 pandemic. Women and Birth. doi.org/10.1016/j.wombi.2020.12.014
Harrison, V., Moulds, M., & Jones, K. (2021). Support from Friends Moderates the Relationship between Repetitive Negative Thinking and Postnatal Wellbeing during COVID-19. Journal of reproductive and infant psychology. doi.org/10.1080/02646838.2021.1886260