Nils Bergman is now a Consulting Public Health Physician. This research was aided by a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada grant to Ann E. Bigelow. Gratitude is expressed to the infants and mothers who participated in the study, to Michelle Power, Laura Walden, and Elyse Boudreau for their research assistance, and to Jennifer Sullivan for her statistical advice.
The relation between early mother–infant skin-to-skin contact and later maternal sensitivity in South African mothers of low birth weight infants†
Article first published online: 4 MAY 2010
Copyright © 2010 Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health
Infant Mental Health Journal
Volume 31, Issue 3, pages 358–377, May/June 2010
How to Cite
Bigelow, A. E., Littlejohn, M., Bergman, N. and McDonald, C. (2010), The relation between early mother–infant skin-to-skin contact and later maternal sensitivity in South African mothers of low birth weight infants. Infant Ment. Health J., 31: 358–377. doi: 10.1002/imhj.20260
- Issue published online: 4 MAY 2010
- Article first published online: 4 MAY 2010
The relation between early mother–infant skin-to-skin contact (SSC) and mothers' subsequent sensitivity to their low birth weight infants was investigated in a study of 12 mother–infant dyads who participated in a South African randomized control study of early SSC. The dyads were visited in the home when infants were under 1 year. Amounts of SSC were taken from hospital records and home interviews. Videotapes of mother–infant interactions in the home were scored for maternal sensitivity on the Maternal Behavior Q-Sort (D.R. Pederson, G. Moran, & S. Bento, 1999) and the Maternal Behavior subscale of the Nursing Child Assessment Teaching Scale (G. Sumner & A. Spietz, 1994). Amount of SSC in infants' first 24 hr correlated with amount of SSC through the first month. Amount of SSC in infants' first 24 hr independently accounted for maternal sensitivity on both measures, indicating that early mother–infant SSC predicted subsequent maternal sensitivity.