Preventing preschool externalizing behavior problems through video-feedback intervention in infancy

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Abstract

In the present study (1) intervention effects on children's preschool behavior problems were evaluated in a high risk sample with an overrepresentation of insecure adult attachment representations in 77 first-time mothers, and (2) predictors and correlates of child problem behavior were examined. Early short-term video-feedback intervention to promote positive parenting (VIPP) focusing on maternal sensitivity and implemented in the baby's first year of life significantly protected children from developing clinical Total Problems at preschool age. Also, compared with the control group, fewer VIPP children scored in the clinical range for Externalizing Problems. No intervention effects on Internalizing clinical problem behavior were found. The VIPP effects on Externalizing and Total clinical Problems were not mediated by VIPP effects on sensitivity and infant attachment or moderated by mother or child variables. Maternal satisfaction with perceived support appeared to be associated with less children's Internalizing, Externalizing, and Total Problems. More research is needed to find the mechanisms triggered by VIPP, but the outcomes could be considered as promising first steps in the prevention of disturbing, externalizing behavior problems in young children.

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