Effects of Age and the Pre-Term Birth of an Infant on Adolescent Mothers' Psychological Adjustment
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This study examined the psychological impact of pre-term birth among adolescent mothers and how it compared to the psychological impact of pre-term birth among adult mothers and full-term birth among adolescent mothers. Fifty-two mothers completed a survey immediately prior to the discharge of their infants from hospital and approximately three months later. Contrary to our hypotheses, adult mothers of pre-term infants reported higher levels of psychological distress and threat appraisal pre-discharge than did adolescent mothers. Post-discharge this difference had dissipated. At the same time, there was no difference between the mothers in the reported helpfulness of social support, although all groups reported a decline in support from pre- to post-discharge. These findings help challenge prevailing assumptions about the transition to motherhood and have implications for service delivery and interventions.
Children's Health Care
© 2012 Taylor & Francis. This is an electronic version of an article published in Children's Health Care, Vol. 41(4), 2012, pp. 302-321. Children's Health Care is available online at: http://www.tandfonline.com with the open URL of your article.
Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology