Warning message

This content is filtered. APPPAH membership is required for full access to journal articles.
-A +A
Publication Date: 
May, 1992
Page Count: 
Starting Page: 

ABSTRACT: Fifty-four (54) middle-income couples were followed from 6 months of pregnancy until 6 months postpartum. The couples' attitudes were assessed prenatally, observations were made at delivery along with an interview after delivery to assess the emotional quality of the couple's birth experience, and follow-up interviews and observations were made at 6 week intervals until 6 months postpartum to determine level of attachment to the infant. The motor development items of the Bay ley Scales of Infant Development were administered twice to each infant. Data was analyzed for the six component scales of motor development. Stepwise multiple regression analysis of the data showed that significant predictors of motor behavior included maternal attachment, time from delivery to initial feeding, mother's prenatal attitude, parity, paternal prenatal attitude, home environment for birth, quality of the father's birth experience, amount of analgesia or anesthesia administered, family income and combined maternal and paternal attachment ratings. These findings are discussed with reference to theories of parent-infant bonding and its relation to motor development.



Bayley, N. The Bayley Scales of Infant Development. New York: The Psychological Corp., 1969.

Bell, R.Q., Weller, G.M., & Waldrop M.F. (1971). Newborn and preschooler: Organization of behavior and relations between periods. Monograph of the Society for Research in Child Development 36 (Whole No. 142).

Bloom, B.A. (1964). Stability and Change in Human Characteristics. New York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc.

Brackbill, Y., Kanes, J. & Mannielo, R.L. (1974). Obstetrical premedication and infant outcome. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 118: 377-384.

Brazelton, T.B. (1970). Obstetrical medication and infant behavior. American Journal of Psychiatry 26: 1261-1269.

Brazelton, T.B. (1974). Neonatal Behavioral Assessment Scale. Clinics in Developmental Medicine, No. 50. London: W.M. Heinemann Medical Books, Ltd.

Brazelton, T.B., Lewis, M. & Rosenblum, L.A. (eds). (1974). Reciprocal mother-infant interaction. In: The Effect of the Infant on its Caretaker. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

Brazelton, T.B., Tronick, E., Wise, S., Als, H., Adamson, L. & Scanlon, J. (1981). The effects of regional obstetric anesthesia on newborn behavior over the first ten days of life. Unpublished manuscript.

Chamberlin, R.W. (1974). New knowledge in early child development: its importance for pediatricians. American Journal of Diseases of Children 126: 585-587.

Conway E. & Brackbill Y. (1970). Delivery medication and infant outcome: an empirical study. Monograph of the Society for Research in Child Development 35 (Whole No. 137).

Emde E.N. & Koenig K.L. (1969a). Neonatal smiling and rapid eye movement states. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry. 8:57-67.

Emde E.N. & Koenig K.L. (1969b). Neonatal smiling, frowning and rapid eye movement states. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry. 8:637-656.

Eveloff H. (1971). Some cognitive and affective aspects of early language development. Child Development 43:1895-1905.

Gutelius, M. (1972). Promising results from a cognitive stimulation program in early infancy. Clinical Pediatrics. 11:585-593.

Jones, N.B. Categories of child-child interaction. In Jones, N.B., Ethiological Studies of Child Behavior. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1972.

Kennell, J.H., Trause, M.A., and Klaus, M.H. Evidence for a sensitive period in the human mother. In Hofer, N. (eds). CIBA Symposium on Attachment. New York: American Elseiver Co., 1975.

Kerlinger and Pedhazer, K. Multiple Regression in Behavioral Research. San Francisco: Holt.

Kron, R.E., Steen, M., and Goddard, K.E. Newborn sucking behavior affected by obstetric medication. Pediatrics, 37, 1012-1216.

Levenstein, P. Cognitive growth in preschoolers through verbal interaction with mothers. American Journal Orthopsychiatry, 1970, 40, 426-432.

Moore, T. Language and intelligence: A longitudinal study of the first eight years. II. Environmental correlates of mental growth. Human Development, 1968, 11, 1-24.

Newton, N. and Levine, S. (eds) Early Experience and Behavior. Springfield, Illinois: Charles C. Thomas and Co., 1968.

Peterson, G. Birthing Normally: A Personal Growth Approach to Childbirth. Berkeley: Mindbody Press, 1981.

Peterson, G.H. and Mehl, L.E. Psychological Outcomes of Alternative Methods for Delivery. In Steward, D. and Steward, L. (eds) 21st Century Obstetrics, Now, Vol. 1, Chapel Hill, North Carolina: NAPSAC, 1977.

Peterson, G. and Mehl, L. Some Determinants of Maternal Attachment. American Journal of Psychiatry, Oct. 1978.

Peterson, G., Mehl, L., and Leiderman, P.H. Perinatal Influences on Father Attachment. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry. March-April, 1979.

Rae, J. Psychophysiological Predictors of Childbirth Outcome. Ph.D. Dissertation, California School of Professional Psychology, Berkeley, 1981.

Richards, M.P.M. and Bernal, J.F. An observational study of mother-infant interactions. In Jones, N.B. (eds) Etiological Studies of Child Behavior. Cambridge: University Press, 1972.

Riegel, K. and Meacham, J. Determinants of Behavioral Development, Vol. II. New York: John Wiley and Sons, 1974.

Ringler, N.M., Kennell, J.H., Tarvella, R., Novojosky, B.J., and Klaus, M.H. Mother to child speech at two years-effects of early postnatal contracts. Journal of pediatrics, 1975, 86, 141-144.

Scanlon, J.W. Obstetrical Premedication and Infant Outcome. Clinics in Perinatology, 1974; 65: 426-435.

Scan-Salapatek, S. and Williams, M. The effects of early stimulation on low birth weight infants. Child Development, 1973, 44, 94-101.

Schaeffer, E. Parents as educations: Evidence from cross-sectional longitudinal and intervention research. Young Child, 1972, 27, 227-239.

Standley, K., Soule, B., and Copans, S. The effects of medication for labor on infants. Science, 1974, 186, 634-636.

Werner, E., Bierman, J., and French, F. The children of Kauai. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1971.

Yang, R.K., Zwerg, A.R., Douthitt, T.C., and Federman, E.J. Successive relationships between maternal attitude during pregnancy, analgesic medication during labor and delivery, and newborn behavior. Developmental Psychology, 1976, 120, 6-14.

Lewis E. Mehl, M.D., Ph.D.

Address correspondence to the author at Department of Family Practice and Community Medicine, University of Vermont College of Medicine, Given Bldg., Room A-111, Burlington, VT 05401, USA.