The Association between Positive Maternal Parenting and Corpus Callosum Development in Young Children

Minjeong Kim, Hye Jin Jeong, Zang Hee Cho, Mira Chung
page. 99~117 / 2020 Vol.14 No.2


In this prospective study, we aimed to determine the impact of maternal parenting and attachment on brain development in early childhood. This study examined the longitudinal effect of maternal parenting and attachment to their children on the growth of the children s corpus callosum. The participants were 10 healthy children and their mothers. They were recruited at 1 year of age. Magnetic resonance imaging and diffusion tensor imaging were performed on the children at 2 and 6 years of age. The increase in corpus callosum fractional anisotropy was obtained by calculating the difference between images acquired at 2 and 6 years. The increase in corpus callosum fractional anisotropy from 2 to 6 years of age was affected by attachment and maternal affective parenting. Thematernal affective parenting strategies were assessed using the Maternal Behavior Research Instrument (MBRI), which has a self-report scale. The weight attributed to the effect of maternal affective parenting on the increase in corpus callosum fractional anisotropy was greater than that of attachment (p < .001). The results showed that everyday life experience, particularly the affective aspect of maternal caring, is an important factor affecting the development of the brain at an early age.

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