Free
Poster Session
Issue Date: August 2016
Published Online: August 01, 2016
Updated: January 01, 2021
A Longitudinal Study of the Occupational Effects in Mothers of Preterm Infants With Disabilities in an Urban Setting
Author Affiliations
  • Remington College
Article Information
Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / Rehabilitation, Participation, and Disability / Basic Research
Poster Session   |   August 01, 2016
A Longitudinal Study of the Occupational Effects in Mothers of Preterm Infants With Disabilities in an Urban Setting
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2016, Vol. 70, 7011505109. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2016.70S1-PO1089
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2016, Vol. 70, 7011505109. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2016.70S1-PO1089
Abstract

Date Presented 4/7/2016

This study investigated occupational factors in mothers when caring for preterm infants with disabilities. Data suggest that mothers demonstrate themes and patterns of perceptions that affect occupational performance. Occupational therapy appears to improve self-perception and satisfaction in occupational performance.

Primary Author and Speaker: Kurt Hubbard

RESEARCH QUESTIONS: This study focused on how perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors toward occupational performance affect the form, function, and meaning of the mothering occupation in relation to caring for the preterm infant. Research questions included (1) does this population experience a loss of discretionary occupations that lead to restricted participation; (2) how is this occupation affected in the areas of perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors toward occupational performance; and (3) does occupational therapy (OT) have an impact on perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors in occupational performance over time?
RATIONALE: OT focuses on improving occupational performance in children and their caregivers. This study focused on the ability of OT to incorporate the needs of the caretaker in the therapeutic process. Identifying qualities relating to occupational goals of mothers and how they internalize these factors as they relate to caring for preterm infants with disabilities was emphasized.
DESIGN: This qualitative study was designed to capture the self-perception of problems encountered in occupational performance in mothers caring for preterm infants at three different time periods (pretest–posttest [Yr 1] and posttest [Yr 10]). Data analysis was used to specifically identify occupational concerns and goals of mothers caring for preterm infants with disabilities and what variables contribute to these changes over time.
PARTICIPANTS: Ten mothers caring for preterm disabled children were included in this study. Preterm children were defined as those born at 23–32 wk. Ages of the children ranged from 16 wk to 28 wk at initial evaluation. Mothers included in this study were caring for children who qualified for OT and were being treated in an early intervention program initially.
METHOD: The Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM) was used at initial referral, at the completion of 1 yr of OT, and at approximately 10-yr follow-up.
ANALYSIS: Perceptions of occupational performance and satisfaction changes with the COPM were measured using pretest–posttest data. This data collection allowed for the comparison within subjects over time. A repeated-measures analysis of variance was used to compare score changes from pretest to posttest. This design addressed the research questions as to whether changes occurring between pretest and posttest can be attributed to OT intervention.
RESULTS: Results demonstrated that there was a significant difference between pretest and posttest scores on the COPM (p < .01). This represented improvement in perceptions of occupational performance and satisfaction when their children continued with OT therapy over a 10-yr time period.
Descriptive data revealed themes relating to discretionary role loss in mothers to the level of concern in many areas of their own occupations, which was reversed by receiving OT.
DISCUSSION: It appears that for mothers to accommodate the care of their children, they “gave up” other roles to the level of concern that was reversed when their children received OT. In addition, mothers’ self-perception in occupational performance and satisfaction improved when continued OT was involved.
IMPACT STATEMENT: Meyer stated that the goal of an individual is to realize a natural rhythm of work, play, rest, and sleep. The results of this study may provide insight regarding the contextual factors that affect occupational performance in mothers and provide evidence that OT treatment facilitates client-centered goals.