Coming Soon: The Wellbeing Course for New Moms

The Wellbeing Course for New Moms will aim to provide free education and guidance on simple but effective techniques for managing depression and/or anxiety for women in the postpartum period (i.e., within 1 year of giving birth). The course will help women manage thoughts, behaviours and physical symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Why was this Course developed?

The Wellbeing Course for New Moms is a slightly modified version of our existing Wellbeing Course which was developed in Australia by the eCentreClinic. Many people who have depression and anxiety never seek treatment, but do have access to the Internet. The course was designed in response to the widespread need for access to mental health treatment. Because depression and anxiety commonly occur at the same time for new moms, information is provided on both conditions.

What is involved in the Wellbeing Course for New Moms?

As this is a new course being explored, half of eligible clients will begin the course right away, while the other half of clients will be asked to wait 12-weeks prior to beginning the course while they continue to access their standard care services (e.g., support groups, physician visits). The Wellbeing Course for New Moms is made up of 5 easy to understand lessons and takes 8 weeks to complete. Lessons consist of educational materials that are accessed online and are based on cognitive behavioural therapy. Clients are encouraged to work on various activities during the week; this often takes several hours. Throughout the course, clients will receive support and guidance in the form of emails from their designated online therapist.

What support is available from therapists?

The Wellbeing Course for New Moms is therapist-assisted. This means that during the week, clients can send questions or comments to their designated online therapist though a secure message system. On a set day each, the therapist checks the website, reviews client progress on the course and responds to messages. Most contact with the therapist is through secure emails, but sometimes therapists contact clients by phone.

Who provides therapist-assistance?

In this Course, clients will be assigned to a registered or certified provider or to a graduate student under supervision of a registered provider. All those who provide the Wellbeing Course for New Moms will work out of the Online Therapy Unit and will have training in psychology or social work.

What research is being done on this course?

This project is being completed as part of a PhD research study conducted by Victoria Suchan under the supervision of Dr. Heather Hadjistavropoulos, Professor of Psychology.

How will my progress be monitored?

All clients will complete brief questionnaires before they begin, on a weekly basis throughout the course, and then again 3 months and 6 months after treatment ends. These questionnaires help us assess how you are doing. These questionnaires do not take very long but provide us with important information on your progress and the outcomes of the course.

Who can take part in the course?

The course is designed for new mothers (i.e., have given birth within the past 1 year) who have symptoms of depression or anxiety, are 18 years of age or older, are comfortable using and have access to the Internet, and have a local medical contact available in case of emergencies. The Wellbeing Course for New Moms is not recommended if you have severe problems with alcohol or drugs, mania, psychosis, or strong thoughts of suicide. Please note this course is currently available to Saskatchewan residents only. 

Who can answer my questions about the course?

If you have any questions about the course, please feel free to contact Victoria Suchan at Victoria.Suchan@uregina.ca for more information. You can also call the Online Therapy Unit at 306-337-3331 or email the Online Therapy Unit at online.therapy.user@uregina.ca.

How do I sign up?

The Wellbeing Course is coming soon! We are hoping to have the Wellbeing Course for New Moms running in August, 2019. If you are interested in being contacted directly once the Course is accepting new clients, please follow the link below to provide your contact information to the primary researcher for this study.