Researchers at the University of York may now help parents understand what their babies are thinking through an app called ‘BabyMind’. The app is designed to alert parents to think things their infants perspective and consider what may be going through their mind—particularly at different points of the day. The app can also be useful in providing resourceful information to parents about a baby’s psychological development.
"There are thousands of parenting apps available, but we don't know whether any of them actually have a positive impact on parenting,” says University of York’s Dr. Elizabeth Meins. "There are many advantages of using apps as a means of intervention -- they're low-cost, easy to use and already integrated into people's lives -- but we wanted to establish whether an app can have a demonstrable effect on the quality of parent-baby interaction."
The study, published in PLOS ONE, may provide new insights on parent-child relationships with technology and particularly to how smartphone apps can be an effective tool at improving parenting behavior.
Learn more about how technology is improving child-parent communication:
"Previous research has shown that teenage mothers show less attunement to their babies' thoughts and feelings compared with mothers in their mid-twenties or older. Our study showed that young mothers who had used BabyMind were just as attuned as the older mothers who'd used the app,” explains Dr. Meins, a psychology professor. "Even more impressive was the fact that the young app users were more attuned to their babies than the older mothers who had not used the BabyMind app. This suggests that using our app is associated with younger motherhood no longer being a disadvantage."
Source: University of York