A randomised trial of an early parenting intervention to reduce maternal mood disorder and infant behavior disturbance [ 2007 - 2009 ]

Also known as: The effects of an early parenting intervention on maternal mood and infant behavior disorders

Research Grant

[Cite as]

Researchers: Prof Jane Fisher (Principal investigator) ,  A/Pr Lyle Gurrin Dr Heather Rowe Prof Julie Quinlivan

Brief description Over 242,000 women give birth annually in Australia and up to 20% experience significant psychological distress in the baby's first year. Severe fatigue, worrying and depression interfere with the development of maternal confidence. If a baby does not sleep well or feed easily or cries for prolonged periods, mothers can feel ineffective and helpless. Assistance early in the baby's life is important to avoid long-term emotional and behavioral problems for mother and child. Nationally, health and social policy focuses on assisting families including those with parental mental health and early parenting problems and children at risk of developmental difficulties. Australia's residential early parenting services are unique, offering brief treatment to mothers with difficulties and infants with unsettled behaviour. Parents are educated in infant care and provided with emotional support and assistance to adjust to the demands of parenting. In past studies by CIA and CIB women reported marked improvements in emotional distress, maternal confidence and infant manageability after completing this treatment and six months later. The education and emotional support were rated as acceptable and very effective. This project is a randomized controlled trial that will evaluate whether brief admission to a residential early parenting service has sustainable benefits for mild to moderate maternal mental health problems and for infant behaviour disturbance. Mothers with a diagnosable mental health condition and with four-month-old infants reported to have unsettled infant behaviour will be randomly assigned to a residential treatment program at an early parenting service or to routine care. Mothers and infants will be assessed with standardized psychological measures one month after treatment and when the baby is one year old. An effective and acceptable intervention will provide an important alternative to available treatments for postnatal psychological disturbance.

Funding Amount $AUD 390,503.84

Funding Scheme NHMRC Project Grants

Notes Standard Project Grant

Click to explore relationships graph
Viewed: [[ro.stat.viewed]]