Document Detail

The effects of maternal social phobia on mother-infant interactions and infant social responsiveness.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17244269     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Social phobia aggregates in families. The genetic contribution to intergenerational transmission is modest, and parenting is considered important. Research on the effects of social phobia on parenting has been subject to problems of small sample size, heterogeneity of samples and lack of specificity of observational frameworks. We addressed these problems in the current study.
METHODS: We assessed mothers with social phobia (N = 84) and control mothers (N = 89) at 10 weeks in face-to-face interactions with their infants, and during a social challenge, namely, engaging with a stranger. We also assessed mothers with generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) (N = 50). We examined the contribution to infant social responsiveness of early infant characteristics (neonatal irritability), as well as maternal behaviour.
RESULTS: Mothers with social phobia were no less sensitive to their infants during face-to-face interactions than control mothers, but when interacting with the stranger they appeared more anxious, engaged less with the stranger themselves, and were less encouraging of the infant's interaction with the stranger; infants of index mothers also showed reduced social responsiveness to the stranger. These differences did not apply to mothers with GAD and their infants. Regression analyses showed that the reduction in social responsiveness in infants of mothers with social phobia was predicted by neonatal irritability and the degree to which the mother encouraged the infant to interact with the stranger.
CONCLUSIONS: Mothers with social phobia show specific parenting difficulties, and their infants show early signs of reduced social responsiveness that are related to both individual infant differences and a lack of maternal encouragement to engage in social interactions.
Lynne Murray; Peter Cooper; Cathy Creswell; Elizabeth Schofield; Caroline Sack
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of child psychology and psychiatry, and allied disciplines     Volume:  48     ISSN:  0021-9630     ISO Abbreviation:  J Child Psychol Psychiatry     Publication Date:  2007 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-01-24     Completed Date:  2007-03-29     Revised Date:  2014-02-19    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0375361     Medline TA:  J Child Psychol Psychiatry     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  45-52     Citation Subset:  IM    
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MeSH Terms
Anxiety Disorders / diagnosis,  epidemiology,  psychology
Infant Behavior / psychology*
Interpersonal Relations
Mother-Child Relations*
Mothers / psychology*
Phobic Disorders / epidemiology*,  psychology*
Severity of Illness Index
Social Behavior*
Grant Support
G9324094//Medical Research Council

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

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