Promoting social-emotional development in infants and toddlers of mothers with postpartum depression: an integrative review




Saari, Deborah

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The effects of PPD may interfere with mothers’ relationships (Murray et al., 2003) and interactions with their infants (Murray, 1992; Beck, 1998; Oberlander, 2005; Tronick & Reck, 2009), all of which increases children’s risk for short and long-term social-emotional, cognitive, and behavioural challenges, as well as mental (Feldman & Eidelman, 2009) and physical health problems (NSCDC, 2008). Recent evidence advises that the potential negative sequelae to child development associated with PPD may be mediated by including maternal-child interventions and other mediating supports to the treatment regime for PPD. However, the best approaches to enhancing maternal mental health while promoting child development has not been established (Murray, 1992; Murray et al., 2003; Poobalan et al., 2007; Tronick & Reck, 2009). The findings of this integrative review support a correlation between PPD and maternal depressive symptoms during postpartum ,and negative social-emotional sequelae for young children. The findings also reveal emerging evidence on interventions to promote and improve the social-emotional development of infants and toddlers of mothers with PPD and postpartum depressive symptoms. This emerging evidence suggests that interventions that strengthen the dyadic relationship and enhance maternal knowledge and skills while promoting maternal mental health may help to mediate the effects of PPD on child social-emotional development.



infants, toddlers, social-emotional development, post-partum depression