Document Detail

Breast feeding and later psychosocial adjustment.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  10214606     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The relationship between the duration of breast feeding and psychosocial outcomes measured between the ages of 15 and 18 years was examined in a birth cohort of 999 New Zealand children. During the period from birth to 1 year, information was collected on maternal breast-feeding practices. Between the ages of 15 and 18 years, sample members were assessed using a range of psychosocial measures, including measures of the quality of parent-child relationships, juvenile delinquency, substance abuse and mental health. Children who were breast fed for a longer duration were more likely to report higher levels of parental attachment and tended to perceive their mothers as being more caring and less overprotective towards them compared with bottle-fed children. No association was found between the extent of breast feeding and subsequent rates of juvenile offending, substance use and mental health in later life. Mothers who elected to breast feed were also more likely to be older, better educated, living with a partner, less likely to smoke during pregnancy, and to come from advantaged socio-economic backgrounds characterised by better living standards and a higher family income. Rates of breast feeding were also greater among mothers who gave birth to a first-born child of higher birthweight. After adjustment for these maternal and perinatal factors, the duration of breast feeding remained significantly associated with adolescent perceptions of maternal care, with increasing duration of breast feeding being associated with higher levels of perceived maternal care during childhood. It is concluded that: (a) it is unlikely that breast feeding is associated with reduced risks of psychiatric disorder in later life; (b) breast feeding may lead to closer parent-child relationships; and (c) it is unlikely that the association between breast feeding and cognitive development is mediated by intervening processes relating to improved psychosocial adjustment in breast-fed children.
D M Fergusson; L J Woodward
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Paediatric and perinatal epidemiology     Volume:  13     ISSN:  0269-5022     ISO Abbreviation:  Paediatr Perinat Epidemiol     Publication Date:  1999 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1999-07-02     Completed Date:  1999-07-02     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8709766     Medline TA:  Paediatr Perinat Epidemiol     Country:  ENGLAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  144-57     Citation Subset:  IM    
Christchurch School of Medicine, New Zealand.
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MeSH Terms
Analysis of Variance
Breast Feeding* / psychology,  statistics & numerical data
Chi-Square Distribution
Confounding Factors (Epidemiology)
Follow-Up Studies
Juvenile Delinquency / statistics & numerical data
Linear Models
Mental Disorders / epidemiology
Mother-Child Relations
New Zealand / epidemiology
Object Attachment
Personality Development*
Prospective Studies
Sample Size
Social Adjustment*
Time Factors

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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