A longitudinal examination of verbal reassurance during infant immunization: Occurrence and examination of emotional availability as a potential moderator
Pillai Riddell, Rebecca
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OBJECTIVE: This study investigated the associations between caregiver verbal reassurance and infant pain-related distress during immunization over the first year of life. The relationships between verbal reassurance and caregiver emotional availability (EA) were also examined. Finally, EA was investigated as a moderator of the relationship between verbal reassurance and infant pain. METHODS: A cross-sectional analysis was conducted with 606 infants (and their parents) at 4 different ages (n = 376 at 2 months, n = 455 at 4 months, n = 484 at 6 months, and n = 407 at 12 months). RESULTS: Verbal reassurance was positively associated with infant distress across all four ages. EA was only negatively related to verbal reassurance at 12 months of age. EA was not a significant moderator at any age. CONCLUSION: Findings demonstrate consistent but small relationships between verbal reassurance and infant pain over the first year of life.