Prenatal maternal psychic development and fetal behavior: an interacting reality

Joao Rosado de Miranda Justo


Psychological development during pregnancy and along transition to parenthood stood under scientific attention during the second half of the twentieth century. Research yielded data suggesting that human adaptation to the reproductive steps of the life cycle is very important in our quest for quality of life. Namely, studies of maternal prenatal emotions revealed the existence of a relationship between, on one side, pregnant women psychological functioning and, on another side, obstetric health, labor and delivery vicissitudes, newborn’s health and behavior, etc. Recently studies about prenatal stress showed how important intrauterine experiences can be for babies’ development. Interventions dedicated to prevent negative consequences induced by maternal stress should be organized as early as possible in human life. In this sense, it is argued that positive aspects reinforcement, both in the mother and in the baby as well as in family functioning, should be seen as the major focus in relational strategies assumed by professionals operating in this field.

Palabras clave

Psychological development during pregnancy; maternal prenatal emotions; obstetric health; newborn’s health and behavior; prenatal stress

Texto completo:



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