Parenting young children during COVID-19: Parenting stress trajectories, parental mental health, and child problem behaviors.

Parenting young children during COVID-19: Parenting stress trajectories, parental mental health, and child problem behaviors.

Publication date: Jan 18, 2024

Parenting stress reflects a discrepancy between a parent’s perception of their resources, the demands of their child’s needs, and the caregiving relationship and contexts (Abidin, 1992). Parenting stress can increase the risk of issues in the parent-child relationship, as well as child behavioral and emotional outcomes (Neece et al. , 2012; Spinelli et al. , 2021). Chronic stressors, such as living through the COVID-19 pandemic, have the potential to increase the demands of parenting and thus parenting stress. Using latent growth curve modeling, we examined parenting stress trajectories of 298 American parents with young children (M = 15. 02 months, range = 1-34 months) over the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. We also examined the effects of parental mental health on parenting stress, and the effects of parental mental health and parenting stress on child problem behaviors using data gathered through the Prolific survey platform. Parental mental health, measured by depressive symptoms Centre for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale-10, anxiety symptoms Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale (GAD-7), and overall stress levels 10-item Perceived Stress Scale, was related to higher initial parenting stress index-short form. Changes in parenting stress over time were linked with higher levels of children’s problem behaviors (CBCL). Child temperament was also related to initial parenting stress. Lower levels of household income were linked with higher levels of parental mental health symptoms and higher rates of parenting stress increases over time. These results highlight the importance of considering the well-being of all family members in child outcomes, and the ways in which different experiences and resources during the COVID-19 pandemic affect parental and child well-being. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2024 APA, all rights reserved).

Concepts Keywords
American Behaviors
Pandemic Child
Parenting Covid
Demands
Health
Higher
Mental
Pandemic
Parent
Parental
Parenting
Stress
Symptoms
Trajectories
Young

Semantics

Type Source Name
disease MESH COVID-19
disease MESH problem behaviors
disease MESH Anxiety Disorder
disease VO time
disease VO Apa

Original Article

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