SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract

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.