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Music therapy song writing with mothers of preterm babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) – A mixed-methods pilot study

This study presents the results of a mixed- methods pilot study measuring the impact of music therapy song writing on bonding, depression, anxiety levels and mental wellbeing in mothers of preterm babies in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in Colombia. The study included 15 mothers and their medically stable babies born between the 28th and 34th week of gestation. The quantitative data were collected with the Mother-to-Infant Bonding Scale (MIBS), the Short Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-Being Scale (SWEMWBS) and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). The qualitative data was collected with semi-structured interviews and was analysed using thematic analysis. The quantitative results indicate favourable effects of music therapy song writing on all outcome measures. While it was not aimed to achieve any statistical significant differences due to the small sample size, the data suggests that music therapy song writing might be especially effective for mothers at risk for an impaired bonding and for mothers with higher anxiety levels or depressive symptoms. The qualitative analysis showed that composing welcome songs for their preterm babies can be a way for parents to creatively express their emotions and thoughts during their baby’s hospitalization and can promote relaxation, parental skills and a successful parent-infant communication.
Source: Arts in Psychotherapy - Category: Psychiatry & Psychology Source Type: research

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