Published in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Volume 19, Issue 19, October 7, 2022.
The definitive version is available at https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph191912858.
Previous research illustrated that infants’ temperamental traits shape parents’ behaviors, but parents’ behaviors can also elicit or intensify infants’ behaviors in ways that shape temperament. One understudied aspect of parenting that may exhibit bidirectional influences with temperament is parent technology use (e.g., use of mobile devices) within family contexts. To date, few studies have examined whether maternal technology use is associated with infant temperament and whether age-related differences in these associations exist. The present study was a secondary analysis of pooled data from three infant feeding studies. Mothers (n = 374) of young infants (age 16.2 ± 6.2 weeks) completed measures of maternal technology use during infant feeding and care interactions, infant temperament, and family demographics. Maternal technology use was positively associated with negative affectivity and negatively associated with orienting/regulatory capacity but was not associated with positive affectivity/surgency. The association between maternal technology use and negative affectivity was stronger for younger infants than older infants, while the association between maternal technology use and orienting/regulatory capacity was not significant for younger infants but was for older infants. Findings suggest maternal technology use is associated with infant negative affectivity and orienting/regulatory capacity, but the strength of these associations may change with infant age. Further longitudinal research is needed to verify this interpretation and understand mechanisms underlying these associations.
Kinesiology | Public Health
© 2022 The Author(s)
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