What is it about?

Experiencing stress early in life has been linked to differences in brain function and an increase in mental health risk by many studies. This study shows that the effects of stress, defined has high levels of social disadvantage, extend even before birth. We report that mother's social disadvantage during pregnancy is related to their baby's brain function shortly after birth and that this brain function is related to early forms of mental illness.

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Why is it important?

Many strategies for making sure all children thrive focus on responding to early behavioral concerns or providing high quality environments during infancy and childhood. These results suggest that efforts to ensure the best possible outcomes for all children can start even before birth by providing economic and environmental supports to pregnant persons.

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This page is a summary of: Maternal prenatal social disadvantage and neonatal functional connectivity: Associations with psychopathology symptoms at age 12 months., Developmental Psychology, February 2024, American Psychological Association (APA),
DOI: 10.1037/dev0001708.
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