What helps the mother of a preterm infant become securely attached, responsive and well-adjusted?

Evans, Tracey, Whittingham, Koa and Boyd, Roslyn (2012) What helps the mother of a preterm infant become securely attached, responsive and well-adjusted?. Infant Behavior and Development, 35 1: 1-11. doi:10.1016/j.infbeh.2011.10.002


Author Evans, Tracey
Whittingham, Koa
Boyd, Roslyn
Title What helps the mother of a preterm infant become securely attached, responsive and well-adjusted?
Journal name Infant Behavior and Development   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0163-6383
1934-8800
Publication date 2012-02
Year available 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.infbeh.2011.10.002
Volume 35
Issue 1
Start page 1
End page 11
Total pages 11
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Elsevier
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Objective: To investigate the relationship between the predictor variables of experiential avoidance, relationship satisfaction, prenatal expectations (compared to postnatal experience) and postpartum support, and the criterion variables of maternal attachment, maternal psychological symptoms and maternal responsiveness, after controlling for birth weight.
Design: A quantitative survey study.
Method: The participants were 127 mothers of preterm infants (delivery prior to 37 weeks gestation, <24 months corrected age) recruited through parent support organisations. The web-based survey included measures of: demographics, postpartum support and prenatal expectations (compared to postnatal experience)-all designed for this study, as well as maternal attachment, (MPAS) maternal responsiveness (MIRI), experiential avoidance (AAQ), maternal psychological symptoms (DASS-21) and relationship satisfaction (RQI). Three standard multiple regression analyses were conducted.
Results: The combined effects of experiential avoidance, relationship satisfaction, prenatal expectations (compared to postnatal experience) and postpartum support accounted for a significant 21% of variance in maternal attachment, Fch (4,121) = 8.01, p < .001, a significant 38% of variance in maternal psychological symptoms Fch (4,121) = 18.38, p < .001, and a significant 11% of variance in maternal responsiveness, Fch (4,121) = 3.78, p = .013 after controlling for birth weight.
Conclusion: The four predictor variables predicted maternal attachment, psychological symptoms and responsiveness after controlling for birth weight, with experiential avoidance being the most important predictor, followed by prenatal expectations (compared to postnatal experience), relationship satisfaction, then postpartum support. This has implications for designing interventions to optimise attachment and responsiveness, and minimise psychological symptoms, in mothers of infants born preterm.
Keyword Preterm infant
Maternal attachment
Maternal psychological symptoms
Maternal responsiveness
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

 
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Created: Mon, 14 Nov 2011, 10:50:05 EST by Ms Zoe Ireland on behalf of Paediatrics & Child Health - RBWH