1 Kitamura Institute of Mental Health Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
2 Department of Nursing, Faculty of Health Science Technology, Bunkyo Gakuin University, Japan
3 Department of Women’s Health/Mother-Child Nursing, Faculty of Life Science, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto, Japan
4 Aso Health Center, Kumamoto Prefecture, Aso, Japan
5 Department of Psychiatry, Graduate School of Medicine, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan
Despite its clinical and public policy-making importance, neonatal abuse has been only minimally studied.
To identify predictors of mothers’ emotional abuse towards their infants at 1 month after childbirth.
We studied a cohort of 252 women at three time points: late pregnancy and 5 days and 1 month after childbirth. At each time point, the women were administered a set of questionnaires about their depression (Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale), bonding towards the foetus or neonate (Maternal Antenatal Attachment Scale and Postnatal Bonding Questionnaire, respectively), and, at 1 month after childbirth, emotional abuse (Conflict Tactic Scale).
Structural equation modeling (SEM) analysis revealed that neonatal emotional abuse was predicted by bonding difficulties at 5 days after childbirth but not by depression at that time point.
Assessment for maternal bonding problems in the early post-natal period should be routinely performed by perinatal health professionals.
Keywords: Bonding Disorder, Depression, Neonatal Abuse, Maternal Response to the Pregnancy, SEM.
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