This course provides a brief introduction to perinatal mental health, with a focus on some specific perinatal mental disorders, and an overview of the potential risks associated with perinatal mental illness.
Developed in line with the perinatal mental health competency framework, the course builds knowledge and understanding in order to enhance the care given to women, infants and families during the perinatal period.
By the end of the course, you will have an increased awareness of some of the most common forms of perinatal mental illness, and will feel more confident navigating this complex area in your work.
Wondering what the course will be like? Download a summary of student & reviewer feedback (PDF).
This course will allow you to:
- Explore a range of factors that can affect a woman’s mental health during pregnancy and after birth, including her history and current context
- Recognise the prevalence and symptoms of common perinatal mental disorders, including postnatal depression and postpartum psychosis
- Gain an understanding of the risks associated with perinatal mental illness, including the risk of suicide and risk to the infant
- Understand the importance of considering the infant’s perspective and how a mother’s mental health might affect the infant
- Identify the various professionals and services from across the care pathway involved in women’s care during the perinatal period.
How will you learn?
- Explore key concepts through interactive lecture content and videos
- Deepen your understanding via regular opportunities for reflection
- Explore how to improve your practice via an expert discussion
- Test your knowledge with a quiz, and unlock a certificate
- Factors from a woman’s history and current context which can affect her experience of pregnancy, birth and parenting, and her risk of perinatal mental illness
- The experience and perspective of the woman’s partner, including their history, relationship and attitudes
- The experience and perspective of the infant, and the importance of holding the infant in mind
- Perinatal depression – prevalence, symptoms and diagnosis
- Postpartum psychosis – prevalence, symptoms and diagnosis
- Perinatal OCD – prevalence, symptoms and diagnosis
- Overview of potential risks associated with perinatal mental disorders, including the risk of suicide and risk to the infant
- Summary of the professionals and services involved in women’s care during the perinatal period.
Who is this course for?
We welcome anyone to this course who has a keen interest in the subject area. In particular, the course is for you if you are a:
- Mental health practitioner in non-specialist services (Adult and CAMHS) and are keen to develop your knowledge and skills in relation to the care of women in the perinatal period.
- Non-mental health professional who cares for women during the pregnancy and the postnatal period and you are keen to develop your knowledge and skills in perinatal mental health in order to improve the care you provide. You may be working as a:
- Midwife or Maternity Support Worker
- Health Visitor or Health Visitor Assistant
- Social Worker or other Practitioner within Social Care
- Children’s Centre or Early Years Practitioner
- Nursery Nurse
- Third Sector Volunteer or Practitioner
- Peer Support Worker.
Know someone else who’d enjoy this course? Download a course flyer (PDF) to share with friends and colleagues.
There are no specific requirements for the course, and there’s no assumption you’ll have prior knowledge in mental health – this course will provide a clear and accessible introduction to the subject, with a clinical focus.
There’s a multiple choice question assessment at the end of the course, unlocking a Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust certificate.
This course runs continuously, so you can sign up at any time. It offers five hours of self-directed learning which you can undertake at a time and pace that suits you.
You will have access to the course and its materials for a total of four weeks. Access begins the day after you’ve registered and paid, when you will receive login details by email.
This course has been independently evaluated for Continuing Professional Development purposes by The CPD Certification Service. This means that the learning activity meets global CPD standards and benchmarks, and the learning value has been scrutinised to ensure integrity and quality.