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HELENA LORÉN - Security in parenting, to promote public health

PhD project participating in the National Research School in General Medicine.

The purpose of the doctoral work is to increase parenting ability and the feeling of security in parenthood by reflecting on attitudes in the interaction with the child and to investigate whether an individualized digital parental support program can be used in primary care to strengthen traditional support.

PhD Student

Helena Lorén PhD Student, University of Gothenburg
E-mail
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Project overview

Project period:

Start date: 2022-01-01

Project description

Background

The number of children with mental health issues and psychosomatic disorders is increasing at the same time as health gaps are widening. There is an increased incidence of overweight and obesity among children and adolecents as a result of reduced physical activity and incorrect diet where there are clear differences between socio-economic groups in society.
One of the Swedish government’s target areas for good health and equal healthcare is “the conditions of early life”. It emphasizes the importance of a good start in life and safe conditions in order to grow and maintain good health as an adult. There is concern on a government level about this development, which is also reflected in “a national strategy for developing parental support”, where the main focus is not only on the child’s needs, but on the importance of strengthening the parents in their parenting role as well. Dynamic changes in society have altered family structures in the western world, and conditions for family life today differ in many ways from previous generations. Several factors contribute to this, such as increased mobility, technical development and greater stress. There has never been so strong a need for clear and aware parenting as now. At the same time, there is an uncertainty concerning parenting and what is best for the child. To feel like a good enough parent is one of the foundations of a secure parenting and this in turn leads to a protective environment for the child.

The purpose of the doctoral work is to increase parenting ability and the feeling of security in parenthood by reflecting on attitudes in the interaction with the child and to investigate whether an individualized digital parental support program can be used in primary care to strengthen traditional support.

Method

Substudy 1: Through a qualitative interview study, identify which factors in today´s society promote or hinder a healthy transition to parenthood in order to be able to design supportive activities and digital arenas.
Substudy 2: Pilotstudy, (RCT) to evaluate the feasibility of the intervention individualized digital parental support program in primary care.
Substudy 3: RCT study, what effect does the internet-based individualized parental support program have compared to treatment as usual (TAU) regarding parental stress and perceived parenting ability? Is there any interaction effect between individualized internet-based parental support program and physical group meetings?
Substudy 4: Systematic litterature review in the field.

Relevance

The study is expected to show whether digital parental support as a complement to traditional support can have an effect and make structured support available to more parents. In this way show methods to better interact with their child when conflicts arise, but also guide in the djungle of screen use and the consecquences it has on reduced physical activity and future ill health. In addition, the study can contribute to primary care´s public health mission to develop methods that give everyone the same opportunities for information and support, while focusing on effective and reasonable efforts with step by step care to be able to make the best use of resourses.

University affiliation

University of Gothenburg

Main supervisor

Gun Rembeck, PhD, Research leader R&D primary care, Leg. Midwife