Conversatorio Colunga - COES: What are the consequences of maternal stress?

August 30, 2018
Communications Colunga Foundation

What consequences can maternal stress have on children's lives during their first years of childhood? This question was the central theme in a new conversation Colunga - Coes. At the meeting, the researcher  Diana Kruger (COES - UAI), sought to answer the question using data collected by the Longitudinal Early Childhood Survey (ELPI).

As explained in his work, stress in pregnant women has important consequences on the cognitive and socio-emotional development of children, regardless of their socioeconomic status.

These can be increased by the family environment, in addition to the skills of the mother, the support given by the father and the health of both.

And how is this generated? According to Kruger explained, stress triggers mental illnesses -such as depression- and the release of hormones that can cross the placenta, generating changes in the body of the fetus during its gestation.

To carry out this survey, pregnant women were taken as a sample during the earthquake that affected the country in 2010 and others that later gave birth, considering that this stress must be exogenous. Within the first group, it was shown that this stress had several effects measured with standardized tests such as Batelle, TADI and CBCL.

And what remains to be done? The academic points out that you have to consider pregnant women as a very vulnerable group within society, which often does not have a guaranteed psychological support for all - differences between public and private health - to be able to face a problem that shows its consequences in the first years of life.

The comments were in charge of Magdalena Mongillo of Fundación Infancia Primero and María Paz Badilla of Fundación Ideas Para la Infancia, while moderation was carried out by Elena Jerez of Fundación Sociedad de Niñ @ s. 

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Source: COES

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