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An investigation of physical health in high-risk mothers and their preschoolers : an inter-generational study

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An investigation of physical health in high-risk mothers and their preschoolers : an inter-generational study

De Genna, Natacha (2001) An investigation of physical health in high-risk mothers and their preschoolers : an inter-generational study. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Health is a result of both internal (biological) and external (e.g. environmental) factors, and it has effects on both child development and the parent-child relationship. The present study examined the role of physical health in high-risk families with young children. The Concordia Longitudinal Risk Project includes a sample of mothers who were identified in childhood as being highly aggressive and/or socially withdrawn. Previous findings from this prospective, inter-generational project suggest that the offspring might be at risk for both health and academic problems by the time they reach school-age. Mothers and their preschool children were visited at home on several occasions in order to collect data on their health and maternal parenting stress. The results indicated that maternal childhood aggression and social withdrawal as well as substance abuse play a role in health of the next generation from the prenatal period to the preschool years. There was also evidence for continuity of physical health from birth until early childhood, with neonatal status emerging as a marker for colic and illness in early childhood. More mature newborns who did not need medical treatment before leaving the hospital were less likely to have common childhood illnesses. Children who were ill more often during early childhood had mothers who reported higher levels of parenting stress. The role of health in family functioning is discussed within the context of the literature and models of inter-generational transfer of risk. Finally, implications for clinicians and public health policy are discussed.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Psychology
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:De Genna, Natacha
Pagination:x, 113 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Theses (M.A.)
Program:Psychology
Date:2001
Thesis Supervisor(s):Slack, Dale
ID Code:1435
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 13:19
Last Modified:08 Dec 2010 10:20
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