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The functions of maternal touch during mother-infant face-to-face and still-face interactions : relationship between function of touch and infants' affect

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The functions of maternal touch during mother-infant face-to-face and still-face interactions : relationship between function of touch and infants' affect

Jean, Amélie D. L (2006) The functions of maternal touch during mother-infant face-to-face and still-face interactions : relationship between function of touch and infants' affect. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Touch plays an essential role in mother-infant interchange, however investigations have focused primarily on the role of distal modalities of communication, such as affect and gaze. The present study was designed to investigate the functions of maternal touching during a Still-Face procedure between mothers and their fullterm 5歔-month-old infants. The objectives were to (1) document how the overall duration, the types, and the functions of touch employed by mothers varied across both Normal periods, (2) clarify the impact of infants' and mothers' distress on the function and duration of touch provided to infants, (3) investigate the reciprocal relationship between functions of touch and infants' affect, and (4) examine how maternal regulatory behaviours provided in the transition period were predicted by infants' affect, and how they influenced the amount of nurturing touch during the Reunion Normal period. Maternal touch was systematically coded using the Caregiver Infant Touch Scale and the Functions of Touch Scale. Results indicated that mothers adapted the functions of touch they used across period, and according to infants' affect and distress level. Mothers used more nurturing function of touch when their infants were fretting or distressed, whereas they used more playful function of touch in order to get their infants smiling. Moreover, findings revealed that the transition periods played a critical regulatory role and influenced subsequent maternal behaviour. Together, these results highlight mothers' ability to sensitively adjust the function of their touch according to their infants' affect, while at the same time underscoring the importance of touch as a channel of communication.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Psychology
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Jean, Amélie D. L
Pagination:xi, 89 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Psychology
Date:2006
Thesis Supervisor(s):Stack, Dale
ID Code:8989
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:18 Aug 2011 14:41
Last Modified:18 Aug 2011 14:59
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