Capture my mood: a feasibility study to develop a visual scale for women to self-monitor their mental wellbeing following birth

Mary Steen, Lois McKellor, Nirmal Lorensuhewa

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: A variety of practices have been developed to screen mothers for anxiety and depression during the antenatal and postnatal periods. However, there is ongoing debate about the appropriateness, timing and effectiveness of screening all women, with a limited number of rigorous evaluations. It is timely to re-think current maternal mental health surveillance and to develop and evaluate innovative approaches to monitoring wellbeing. Aim: To ascertain a correlation between a newly developed Capture My Mood (CMM) tool and the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale (WEMWBS) and assess the acceptability of the tool during the early postnatal period. Methods: A mixed-methods approach was used to pilot the CMM tool alongside WEMWBS. Participants were recruited from a midwifery group practice and provided with a guide which explained the study and how to use the CMM tool. Participants were asked to complete the CMM tool in the early postnatal period. At completion of week two, participants completed the final CMM tool as well as the WEMWBS. Pearson’s Correlation was used to calculate the r2 and p values to assess the correlation between the CMM and WEMWBS scores. Participants were asked to complete a short questionnaire to record their views. Ethical approval was gained from South Australia Health human research ethics committee and the UniSA ethics committee. Findings: A total of 20 women was the estimated sample to ascertain a high correlation between the CMM tool and the WEMWBS. To allow for attrition rates, 30 women were invited to participate in this study. Some 12 women returned the completed CMM, WEMWBS and questionnaire within the time period of eight weeks. Findings indicate an acceptable correlation between the CMM tool and WEMWBS (r=0.57, p=0.05). Women found the tool easy to use and understood the five ‘C’ descriptors. Conclusion and implications: This study has shown that the CMM tool correlates with the WEMWBS. Women found the simplicity of tool to be user-friendly and helpful in self-monitoring their mental wellbeing during the early postnatal period.
Figure 1. CMM visual tool (visual design adapted from Thomson and Chatterjee, 2014)
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages6
Specialist publicationEvidence Based Midwifery
PublisherRCM The Royal College of Midwives
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2017

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