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Journal of Human Growth and Development

Print version ISSN 0104-1282


SANINI, Cláudia; BRUM, Evanisa Helena Maio de  and  BOSA, Cleonice Alves. Maternal depression and implications on the infant development of autist. Rev. bras. crescimento desenvolv. hum. [online]. 2010, vol.20, n.3, pp. 809-815. ISSN 0104-1282.

INTRODUCTION: there is evidence of intensive stress in caregivers of children with autism, especially mothers. One of its consequences may be the development of a depressive disorder. Maternal depression can adversely affect both the mother and the child. OBJECTIVE: to describe the aspects involved in maternal depression in the context of autism and the impact of this diagnosis in child development. METHOD: it was consulted the databases PsycINFO and SciELO. As search strategies in PsycINFO the descriptors "autism OR infantile autism and mother depression" were used; in SciELO the terms were "autism and mother depression", in all fields. RESULTS: The articles were classified according to the type: review, case study or experimental study (N = 14). It was considered both qualitative and quantitative studies, in Portuguese, English and Spanish. The articles listed from 1 to 3 were used to base the conception of autism and maternal depression. CONCLUSION: the diagnosis of autism may adversely affect the maternal mental health of these children, and may negatively impact the mother-child interaction and child development. Interventions to improve the mental health of parents and development of children with autism have shown positive results.

Keywords : maternal depression; autism and child development.

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