Journal article

Infant risk and safety in the context of maternal substance use

Menka Tsantefski, Cathy Humphreys, Alun C Jackson

Children and Youth Services Review | PERGAMON-ELSEVIER SCIENCE LTD | Published : 2014

Abstract

Substance-exposed infants are extremely vulnerable due to biological, environmental and systemic risk factors that commence in pregnancy and are compounded by the postnatal caregiving environment. Substance-dependent mothers face unique challenges in caring for an infant while managing drug use or pharmacotherapy. The vulnerability of infancy therefore requires thorough assessment of risk and a prompt response from service providers. Drawing upon a prospective case-study of twenty women accessing a specialist alcohol and other drug obstetric service, this article explores the factors which contributed to infant risk or safety from the perinatal period to the end of the infant's first year. D..

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