The role of negative maternal affective states and infant temperament in early interactions between infants with cleft lip and their mothers
Montirosso, R., Fedeli, R., Murray, L., Morandi, F., Brusati, R., Perego, G. G. and Borgatti, R. (2012) The role of negative maternal affective states and infant temperament in early interactions between infants with cleft lip and their mothers. Journal of Pediatric Psychology, 37 (2). pp. 241-250. ISSN 1465-735X
To link to this article DOI: 10.1093/jpepsy/jsr089
OBJECTIVES: The study examined the early interaction between mothers and their infants with cleft lip, assessing the role of maternal affective state and expressiveness and differences in infant temperament. METHODS: Mother-infant interactions were assessed in 25 2-month-old infants with cleft lip and 25 age-matched healthy infants. Self-report and behavioral observations were used to assess maternal depressive symptoms and expressions. Mothers rated infant temperament. RESULTS: Infants with cleft lip were less engaged and their mothers showed more difficulty in interaction than control group dyads. Mothers of infants with cleft lip displayed more negative affectivity, but did not report more self-rated depressive symptoms than control group mothers. No group differences were found in infant temperament. CONCLUSIONS: In order to support the mother's experience and facilitate her ongoing parental role, findings highlight the importance of identifying maternal negative affectivity during early interactions, even when they seem have little awareness of their depressive symptoms.