Mindfulness and trauma-informed intervention improves parenting

written by Meena Azzollini

Baby and mother on nature in the park

Credit:123RF

Mindfulness has been known to help expectant mothers with childbirth as they address their fears and reduce associated depression to culminate in better childbirth experiences.

Mindfulness training has also been introduced into a mother’s life after the child is born through mindfulness based parenting courses and training sessions helping mothers be better parents by helping them cope better with all the demands of parenting as children grow.

The mindfulness based training programme was designed to give women the tools and resources they need to be good parents by helping mother build their self-efficacy and self-confidence.

Mindfulness based parenting intervention has now found its way to help mothers with opioid use disorder – by improving the quality of parenting in this group.

Mothers with opioid use disorder  are at a high risk of maladaptive parenting.

An observational study from Jefferson’s Maternal Addiction Treatment Education & Research (MATER) program aimed to measure the impact of a trauma-informed mindfulness-based parenting (MBP) intervention on quality of parenting behaviours as well as investigates the link between exposures to childhood trauma and self-reported mindful parenting.

160 women were recruited from a substance use treatment programme and they participated in a 12 week mindful parenting interventions at Jefferson’s Family Center, an outpatient and intensive outpatient treatment centre that cares for women who are pregnant, parenting or working toward reuniting with their child.

The 12 week programme included mindfulness meditation, mother and baby education and practice and education on the impact of trauma.

The mindfulness based training programme was designed to give women the tools and resources they need to be good parents by helping mothers build their self-efficacy and self-confidence.

The researchers conducted pre- and post-tests using three validated instruments to measure observed parenting quality, the mother’s childhood trauma exposure and self-reported mindful parenting.

Women who participated in the mindfulness based parenting intervention showed a significant increase in the quality of parenting from “low” at baseline to “moderate” at completion of the 12 week programme.

The researchers also found that attendance made a difference in improving parenting quality especially for women who experienced high levels of childhood trauma.

The results are promising for developing programmes and incorporating mindfulness interventions to help mothers with opioid use disorders develop bonding with their children and improve their quality of parenting.

Mindfulness training goes a long way in helping parents build strong and powerful relationship with their children and in turn helps children thrive.

Source: Journal of Addiction Medicine


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Meena Azzollini

Meena is passionate about holistic wellbeing, alternative healing, health and personal power and uses words to craft engaging feature articles to convey her knowledge and passion. She is a freelance writer and content creator from Adelaide, Australia, who draws inspiration from family, travel and her love for books and reading.

A yoga practitioner and a strong believer in positive thinking, Meena is also a mum to a very active young boy. In her spare time, she loves to read and whip up delicious meals. She also loves the smell of freshly made coffee and can’t ever resist a cheesecake. And she gets tickled pink by anything funny!