In a study of mothers of infants born at very low birthweight (less than 1500 grams or 3 lbs., 3 ozs.),
six months after discharge from the NICU 24% of mothers attained scores on a postpartum questionnaire that suggest that they would qualify for a diagnosis of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
According to the National Center for PTSD, “symptoms can cause problems with trust, closeness, communication, and problem solving,” which may have adverse effects on the quality of parenting behavior, as well as on their child’s development. It can also compromise a NICU parent’s ability to maintain and nurture close family relationships or friendships which can foster feelings of isolation and depression.