The Wellbeing Course for New Moms is a free online therapy program being offered through the Online Therapy Unit at the University of Regina for women that have given birth in the past 12 months and are caring for an infant. While most new moms will feel worried and sad at times, this course is designed for women who are concerned about ongoing anxiety and/or depression that is distressing or impacting functioning. The course will provide education and therapist guidance on simple but effective skills and techniques for managing depression, anxiety, and stress in the postpartum period.
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. This particular course was designed in response to the widespread need for access to mental health treatment among new mothers.
Interested individuals are asked to apply online for the course. You will then be contacted by telephone by one of the Online Therapy Unit staff members to discuss your concerns and ensure this course is a good fit for you. If the course is a good fit, half of individuals will begin the course right away, while the other half of individuals 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 based on cognitive behaviour therapy, and are accessed online. You will be encouraged to work on various activities during the week; this often takes several hours. Throughout the course, you will receive support and guidance in the form of emails from your designated online therapist.
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.
In this course, individuals will be assigned to a registered or certified provider or to a graduate student under supervision of a registered provider. All those who are therapists during the Wellbeing Course for New Moms will work out of the Online Therapy Unit and will have training in psychology or social work.
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.
Your progress will be monitored differently depending on whether you receive the course immediately, or following a 12-week waiting period. If you receive the course right away, you will be asked to complete questionnaires before beginning treatment, on a weekly basis throughout the course, 1 month following treatment and 6 months following treatment.
If you are in the 12-week waiting group, you will be asked to complete questionnaires initially, after 8-weeks, and finally after 12-weeks before being able to choose to participate in the full Wellbeing Course for New Moms.
These questionnaires do not take very long but provide us with important information on your progress and the outcomes of the course.
The course is designed for women that: have recently given birth (i.e., within the past 12 months); are experiencing 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.
Please do not hesitate to contact the project coordinator, Victoria Suchan if you have any questions! She can be reached at Victoria.Suchan@uregina.ca. You can also call the Online Therapy Unit at 306-337-3331 or email the Unit at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Wellbeing Course for New Moms is accepting applications now! Please click the button below to complete the online application.