Maternal Depressive Symptoms During the Pre- and Postnatal Periods and Infant Attention to Emotional Faces

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DOI

  • Eeva-Leena Kataja, Turku PET Centre, Turku University Central Hospital and University of Turku, Turku
  • ,
  • Linnea Karlsson, Turku University Hospital, turku, Finland.
  • ,
  • Jukka M Leppänen, Tampere University Hospital and University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland.
  • ,
  • Juho Pelto, Turku PET Centre, Turku University Central Hospital and University of Turku, Turku
  • ,
  • Tuomo Häikiö, Turku PET Centre, Turku University Central Hospital and University of Turku, Turku
  • ,
  • Saara Nolvi, Turku PET Centre, Turku University Central Hospital and University of Turku, Turku
  • ,
  • Henri Pesonen, Aalto Univ, Aalto University, Aalto Sci Inst
  • ,
  • Christine E Parsons
  • Jukka Hyönä, Turku PET Centre, Turku University Central Hospital and University of Turku, Turku
  • ,
  • Hasse Karlsson, Turku University Hospital, turku, Finland.

We examined how infants' attentional disengagement from happy, fearful, neutral, and phase-scrambled faces at 8 months, as assessed by eye tracking, is associated with trajectories of maternal depressive symptoms from early pregnancy to 6 months postpartum (decreasing n = 48, increasing n = 34, and consistently low symptom levels n = 280). The sample (mother-infant dyads belonging to a larger FinnBrain Birth Cohort Study) was collected between 5/2013-6/2016. The overall disengagement probability from faces to distractors was not related to maternal depressive symptoms, but fear bias was heightened in infants whose mothers reported decreasing or increasing depressive symptoms. Exacerbated attention to fearful faces in infants of mothers with depressive symptoms may be independent of the timing of the symptoms in the pre- and postnatal stages.

Original languageEnglish
JournalChild Development
ISSN0009-3920
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 8 Oct 2018

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© 2018 Society for Research in Child Development.

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