Abstract

Whether infant regulatory behavior problems already in the first month of life indicate an increased risk of childhood neurobehavioral problems, and whether maternal depression in the postpartum and early childhood underpins these associations remain unclear. Altogether, 2049-2364 mothers from the Prediction and Prevention of Pre-eclampsia and Intrauterine Growth Restriction (PREDO) study completed the Neonatal Perception Inventory on regulatory behavior problems at the infant's age of 15.6 days (SD 3.2, range 1-30), the Infant Behavior Questionnaire-Revised on temperament at 6.5 months (SD 0.9, range 4.2-12.4), and the Ages and Stages Questionnaire-3 on developmental milestones and the Child Behavior Checklist on behavioral problems at 3.5 years (SD 0.7, range 1.9-6.0). Maternal depressive symptoms were measured by the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (infancy follow-ups) and Beck Depression Inventory-II (childhood follow-up). Father-rated infant temperament and paternal depressive symptoms were also available (n = 1474). Higher levels of infant regulatory behavior problems predicted higher levels of mother- and father-rated negative affectivity temperament (0.13 SD units per SD unit, 95% confidence interval 0.09-0.17; and 0.09, 0.04-0.14, respectively), lower levels of mother-rated orienting/regulation temperament (- 0.09, - 0.13 to - 0.05) and problem-solving skills (- 0.12, - 0.21 to - 0.04), and higher levels of Externalizing (0.07, 0.03-0.11) and Total behavioral problems (0.07, 0.03-0.11). Regulatory behaviors partially mediated the effect of maternal depressive symptoms. Regulatory behavior problems already during the first month of life predict neurobehavioral outcomes, and partially mediate the effect of maternal depressive symptoms. Our study may inform design of interventions aimed at timely prevention in children at risk.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Child & Adolescent Psychiatry
Volume28
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)847-859
Number of pages13
ISSN1018-8827
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 3124 Neurology and psychiatry
  • 515 Psychology
  • Regulatory behavior
  • Infant
  • Depressive symptoms
  • Temperament
  • Neurobehavioral outcomes
  • MATERNAL DEPRESSION
  • FEEDING PROBLEMS
  • CHILDREN BORN
  • AGE
  • TEMPERAMENT
  • DISORDERS
  • SYMPTOMS
  • VALIDITY
  • STRESS
  • RISK

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