Early stress and social support influences on mothers' and high‐risk infants' functioning in late infancy

Keith Crnic, Mark T. Greenberg, Nancy M. Slough

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Scopus citations


The relationships among early stress, maternal social network supports, and mother‐infant functioning during later infancy were explored in a group of 52 mothers and their high‐risk premature infants. Maternal stress and support data were collected 1 month after infants were released from the hospital, and measures of parenting, mother‐infant interaction, infant social and developmental competence, and infant attachment were collected at infant corrected ages of 8 and 12 months. Results indicated that stress and support from various ecological sources, including professionals, were related to parent and infant outcomes at both measurement occasions. Varying sources of support differentially predicted varying parent and infant measures where support had a stress buffering effect only under certain conditions. Professional support was found to account for significant amounts of variance in relation to some parenting factors beyond that attributable to other support sources. The results are discussed within the context of previous support findings and in relation to transactional models of high‐risk infant development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19-33
Number of pages15
JournalInfant Mental Health Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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