Journal of Education and
Research in Nursing
Original Article

Determination of Maternal Attachment Level and Associated Factors of Mothers of Premature Infants Long-Term Hospitalized in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit


University of Health Sciences, Konya Training and Research Hospital, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Konya, Turkey


Department of Child Health and Diseases Nursing, Necmettin Erbakan University School of Nursing, Konya, Turkey

Journal of Education and Research in Nursing 2021; 18: 383-388
DOI: 10.5152/jern.2021.93695
Read: 358 Downloads: 55 Published: 31 December 2021

Aim: This study aimed to determine maternal attachment level and its related factors in the mothers of premature neonates hospitalized in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) for a long time.

Methods: This was an analytic study carried out during June to November 2017 in the NICU of three state University Hospitals in Konya. The participants consisted of 127 mothers of premature neonates who had been hospitalized for at least 30 days. Data were collected by the Neonatal-Maternal Data Sheet and the Maternal Attachment Inventory (MAI). The dependent variable of the study was the MAI score, and the independent variables were the characteristics of the mother and the neonates. Data were analyzed by percentage, mean ± standard deviation, and multiple regressions. A P of less than .05 was considered as statistically significant.

Results: The maternal attachment mean scores of mothers were 99.09 ± 7.32. The highest score that can be obtained from the scale is 104, according to which can be said that the attachment level of the mothers is good. No correlation was found between the characteristics of neonates and maternal attachment score (P > .05). The result of regression analysis showed that the frequency of the mother’s visit of the neonate, income level, hugging the neonate, maternal age, and the number of pregnancies had a significant association with the maternal attachment score (P < .05).

Conclusion: Our results confirmed that a decrease in the frequency of mothers visiting and hugging neonate, a decrease in income level, as well as an increase in maternal age and the number of pregnancies may pose a risk for mother-neonate attachment. So, it is suggested that nurses encourage mothers to visit, hug, and breastfeed their neonates to improve mother-neonate attachment. In addition, hospital administrations should provide familycentered care infrastructures to improve maternal attachment.

EISSN 2757-9204