ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION DURING PREGNANCY AND TEMPERAMENT IN EARLY INFANCY: FINDINGS FROM A MULTI-ETHNIC, ASIAN, PROSPECTIVE BIRTH COHORT STUDY

Shang Chee Chong*, Birit F. Broekman, Anqi Qiu, Izzuddin M. Aris, Yiong Huak Chan, Anne Rifkin-Graboi, Evelyn Law, Cornelia Yin Ing Chee, Yap Seng Chong, Kenneth Y.C. Kwek, Seang Mei Saw, Peter D. Gluckman, Michael J. Meaney, Helen Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Maternal antenatal mood is associated with negative infant temperament. This link has not been substantiated in Asian populations. We evaluated the association between antenatal maternal mood and infant temperament among Asian mother–infant pairs. Antenatal maternal depression and anxiety were assessed using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (J. Cox, J. Holden, & R. Sagovsky, 1987) and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (C. Spielberger, R. Gorsuch, R. Lushene, P. Vagg, & G. Jacobs, 1983), respectively, at 26 weeks of pregnancy and 3 months’ postnatally. Infant temperament was evaluated with the Early Infant Temperament Questionnaire (B. Medoff-Cooper, W.B. Carey, & S.C. McDevitt, 1993) at 3 months. Factor analysis was performed to extract culturally relevant categories of temperamental traits. Linear regression was performed to examine the influences of antenatal maternal mood on the factor-model-derived infant temperament. Of the 609 mothers, 11% met risk criteria for depression, 17% for state-anxiety, and 19% for trait-anxiety during pregnancy. Factor analysis yielded three infant temperament factors: Emotionality and Attentional Regulation, Sensory Reactivity, and Regularity and Motor Expression, Cronbach's αs = 0.613, 0.712, and 0.752, respectively. Maternal antenatal state-anxiety, p <.001, and trait anxiety, p =.005, were associated with negative emotionality and poor attentional regulation, especially among Chinese, whereas depression was not, p =.090. There was an association between maternal antenatal anxiety and negative infant temperamental traits in this Asian sample.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)584-598
Number of pages15
JournalInfant Mental Health Journal
Volume37
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2016
Externally publishedYes

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