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An investigation into the relationships between psychological functioning, engagement with obstetric services, and prenatal attachment

Hobbs, Kelly (2010) An investigation into the relationships between psychological functioning, engagement with obstetric services, and prenatal attachment. DClinPsy thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

There has been an increasing recognition of the importance of attachment between a mother and her unborn baby, commonly termed ‘prenatal attachment’. This thesis initially reviews research on psychological and relational factors and prenatal attachment over the last decade, across varying pregnancy groups. The review highlighted the role of mood states, cognitive appraisals and relational factors. Disparities across measurement tools and research designs made conclusions problematic, highlighting the need for further research. To this end the research report investigates the role of emotional factors such as well-being, distress tolerance and borderline personality features and adult attachment in relation to prenatal attachment. Lack of engagement with obstetric services is a major concern; a further objective of this report examines women who delay booking their prenatal care and their likely profile. Results showed that well-being, distress tolerance-absorption, avoidant attachment style, maternal age, planned pregnancy and relationship status were significant predictors of prenatal attachment. Furthermore women who book late for their maternity care had higher relational difficulties, however the strongest predictor of late booking was unplanned pregnancies and not being in a relationship with the father of the baby. Furthermore, this report aims to identify pertinent psychological factors which affect women during their pregnancy. These findings will guide professionals working in obstetric services and therefore influence psychological and health outcomes for both mother and child.

Item Type: Thesis (DClinPsy)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Science (Sheffield) > Psychology (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Miss Kelly Hobbs
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2011 12:30
Last Modified: 08 Aug 2013 08:45
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/1159

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