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Support of mothers and their infants by the child health nurse: expectations and experiences
Linköping University, Department of Medicine and Care, Nursing Science. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
2002 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The general aim of this thesis was to describe and analyse the CH nurse's support of mothers and their infants, given in order to form a good relationship md lead to favourable development of the child. In studies I, II and III, grounded theory and constant comparative method were used. The aim of study I was to identify how child health nurses view the mother-infant relationship, and how they can improve this relationship. The nurses (n=10) could, through observation of the interplay between mother and infant, view the relationship between the two of them. Such interplay depends on the mother's ability to interpret the infant's signals and the clarity of these signals. These attributes are influenced by mother and infant body language, vocal language, health status, expectations and life situation, which are also influenced mutually. The nurse could improve this relationship through promoting an understanding of the interplay between mother and infant.

The aims of study II were to identify what the child health nurse believed was expected of her by women who had recently become mothers, primipara and multipara; and to investigate which problems the nurse found it most difficult to deal with and to analyse why they were difficult. The nurses (n=15) believed that mothers expected care of the infant and the family from the nurse, comprising support, advice, and child health assessments. The nurses found it most difficult to deal with obstacles to interaction with mothers, such as motherhood problems, hidden, social, and organisational problems.

The aims of study III were to identify what first-time mothers expected of the child health nurse; and to investigate the help and support that new mothers receive from nurses, and whether first-time mothers felt that anything was lacking. The mothers (n=20) expected the nurse to be a supporter, characterized by accessibility, approachability, knowledge, advice and support. They had experienced most of these things, accessibility and approachability in particular. However, the nurses showed a lack of continuity in interest in the mothers' bodies and health. In addition, mothers who wished to discontinue breast-feeding felt that they lacked support from the nurse.

The aim of study IV was to investigate mothers' experiences of their encounters with the child health nurse. A national random sample of mothers (n=140) reported, based on critical incident technique, support or lack of support from the nurse. Thematic content analysis, including 125 reports and demographic data, was accomplished. Symbolic interactionism was used as a frame of reference. The central factor was that they were able to share the realm of motherhood that the nurse is willing to share all kinds of emotions and experiences related to being a mother. The majority of the mothers had received valuable support during troublesome incidents. Nevertheless, there were several dissatisfied mothers who had expected support but thought that they had received insulting treatment instead.

The aims of study V were to describe similarities and differences in expectations of the child health nurse, as they were expressed by recently delivered first-time mothers as compared to an expression of what child health nurses believed mothers of infants expected of them. Data from the intetviews with nurses in study II and mothers in study III (n=35) were analysed by thematic content analysis. The nurse could be someone to approach, who, through her knowledge, could assess the child's development and give immunizations and be a supporter, counsellor, safety provider and a parent group organizer. Similarities between mothers' and nurses' statements occurred more frequently than differences, which are suggested to depend on the Swedish tradition among new mothers of visiting the child health clinic. The mothers expected participation in parent groups to a higher degree than the nurses believed that they did.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköpings universitet , 2002. , 65 p.
Series
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 715
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-27481Local ID: 12135ISBN: 91-7373-155-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-27481DiVA: diva2:248033
Public defence
2002-01-18, Berzeliussalen, Hälsouniversitet, Linköping, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Available from: 2009-10-08 Created: 2009-10-08 Last updated: 2012-09-18Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. How child health care nurses view a mother-infant relationship: A qualitative study
Open this publication in new window or tab >>How child health care nurses view a mother-infant relationship: A qualitative study
1996 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, ISSN 0283-9318, E-ISSN 1471-6712, Vol. 10, no 3, 180-185 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Too many children in Sweden grow up under difficult circumstances. Every child should have the opportunity to grow up to be a confident person. We know today that the new-born child is able to influence its surroundings. The main purpose of child health care in Sweden is to reduce mortality, morbidity and disability in children, and also to reduce any detrimental effects on the family. Child Health Care (CHC)-nurses provide continuity and security for parents and children in developing relationships. The aims of this study were to identify how CHC-nurses view a mother-infant relationship, and how they can improve this relationship. Ten CHC-nurses were interviewed about mother-infant relationships. Verbatim transcripts were analysed using constant comparative analysis. The emerging core category was interplay. Under this construct there were two categories; maternal ability and signals from the infant. Different substantive codes were given under these categories, viz. body language, vocal language, poor health, expectations and life situation. In describing how to improve the mother-infant relationship, promoting an understanding of interplay was the core category. Three categories/strategies were perceived; visualize, respect and demonstrate. The results were then compared with the literature. This study indicates that interplay is of greatest importance in a mother-infant relationship.

National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-81524 (URN)9060790 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2012-09-18 Created: 2012-09-18 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
2. What child health nurses believe mothers with infants expect of them
Open this publication in new window or tab >>What child health nurses believe mothers with infants expect of them
2000 (English)In: Nursing and Health Sciences, ISSN 1441-0745, E-ISSN 1442-2018, Vol. 2, no 2, 83-91 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aims were to identify what the child health nurse believed was expected of her by women who had recently become mothers, primipara and multipara, to investigate which problems the nurse found most difficult to deal with and to analyse why they were difficult. The grounded theory method was employed for conducting interviews with 15 nurses. The data analysis showed that the nurses thought mothers expected care of the infant and the family from the nurse, comprising support, advice and child health assessments. What the nurses found most difficult to deal with were obstacles to interaction with mothers such as motherhood problems, hidden, social and organisational problems. They wanted to have a positive interaction with mothers to be able to fulfil the task of supporting parents and identifying risks to the child's healthy upbringing. This task places great demands on nurses' competence and knowledge about the child and family.

National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-81525 (URN)10.1046/j.1442-2018.2000.00043.x (DOI)
Available from: 2012-09-18 Created: 2012-09-18 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
3. Maternal expectations of the child health nurse
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Maternal expectations of the child health nurse
2001 (English)In: Nursing and Health Sciences, ISSN 1441-0745, E-ISSN 1442-2018, Vol. 3, no 3, 139-147 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The main aim of this study was to identify what first-time mothers in Sweden expected of Child Health Nurses. A further aim was to investigate what help and support was received by the new mothers and whether they felt that anything was missing. Twenty new mothers were interviewed according to grounded theory and the data were analyzed by the constant comparative method. It was found that first-time mothers expected Child Health Nurses to have faith in a new mother's own strength and to be accessible, approachable and knowledgeable, providing advice and support. New mothers indicated that they had experienced most of these characteristics, especially accessibility and approachability, but some felt that there were deficiencies (e.g. a lack of continued interest in their own bodies and health, as well as a lack of support when they ceased to breast-feed). The Child Health Service was taken for granted by new mothers. First-time mothers indicated that they appreciated the service, particularly those mothers who did not have a good social network. However, some of the new mothers expressed negative feelings regarding the Child Health Service provided.

Keyword
Child health service, Expectations, Experiences, Grounded theory, Mothers, Nurses
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-47176 (URN)10.1046/j.1442-2018.2001.00081.x (DOI)
Available from: 2009-10-11 Created: 2009-10-11 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved
4. The view of the child health nurse among mothers
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The view of the child health nurse among mothers
2003 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, ISSN 0283-9318, E-ISSN 1471-6712, Vol. 17, no 2, 160-168 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this exploratory study was to investigate mothers' experiences of their encounters with the child health (CH) nurse. A cross-sectional design was used for the study, based on data from 140 mothers gathered by the critical incident technique. The analysis was accomplished by a thematic content analysis, using inductive reasoning in three steps. Symbolic interactionism was used as a frame of reference. The results suggest that the central factor in the encounter between mother and nurse is that they are able to share the realm of motherhood, meaning that the nurse is open and willing to share all types of emotions, experiences and attitudes related to being a mother. Given this basis, other important factors are the supply of sound advice and practical interventions, and that the nurse is reassuring and accessible. The majority of the participating mothers had experienced CH nurses who had provided them with valuable support during troublesome incidents. However, there were also several dissatisfied mothers who had expected support but thought they received insulting treatment instead. The mothers and the nurses have varying experiences and background and therefore different perspectives, which may lead to difficulties in understanding each other. Knowledge about the important factors, that affect the mother–nurse encounter, can be used to strengthen the nurses' positive behaviours and facilitate understanding of how disappointed mothers have experienced their health care encounters.

National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-26300 (URN)10.1046/j.1471-6712.2003.00106.x (DOI)10820 (Local ID)10820 (Archive number)10820 (OAI)
Available from: 2009-10-08 Created: 2009-10-08 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved
5. Expectations of the child health nurse in Sweden: two perspectives
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Expectations of the child health nurse in Sweden: two perspectives
2003 (English)In: International Nursing Review, ISSN 0020-8132, E-ISSN 1466-7657, Vol. 50, no 2, 119-128 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: the child health service exists to support and stimulate parents in order to reduce stress and to encourage an advantageous development of the preschool child.

Aim: To explore and describe similarities and differences in expectations of the child health nurse, from the perspective of the recently delivered first-time mother, as compared to an expression of what the child health nurse believed mothers of infants expected of them. The data consisted of 15 interviews with child health nurses and 20 interviews with first-time mothers. Thematic content analysis resulted in seven categories of expectations. The child health nurse was expected to be someone to approach, who could assess the child's development and give immunizations and to be a supporter, counsellor, safety provider and a parent group organizer with knowledge. Similarities between the mothers’ and the nurses’ statements occurred more frequently than differences, which is suggested to depend on the Swedish tradition among new mothers of visiting the child health clinic. The mothers expected participation in parent groups to a higher degree than the nurses thought they did. Child health nurses who fulfil the mothers’ expectations appear to require a good relationship with the mother in order to find out what she desires, which the allocation of sufficient time for regular meetings, will facilitate. Moreover, the nurse requires knowledge about children's requirements and the transition to motherhood as well as the father's important role.

National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-26873 (URN)10.1046/j.1466-7657.2003.00147.x (DOI)11494 (Local ID)11494 (Archive number)11494 (OAI)
Available from: 2009-10-08 Created: 2009-10-08 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved

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