Economic deprivation, maternal depression, parenting and children's cognitive and emotional development in early childhood

Br J Sociol. 2008 Dec;59(4):783-806. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-4446.2008.00219.x.


This study uses data from the UK Millennium Cohort Study to examine the extent to which economic circumstances in infancy and mother's mental well-being are associated with children's cognitive development and behaviour problems at age 3 years, and what part parenting behaviours and attitudes play in mediating these factors. The analyses derived from Structural Equation Modelling show that economic deprivation and maternal depression separately and collectively diminish the cognitive and emotional well-being of children, and part of this diminution emanates from less nurturing and engaged parenting by those with less economic and emotional resources.

MeSH terms

  • Attention Deficit and Disruptive Behavior Disorders / etiology
  • Attention Deficit and Disruptive Behavior Disorders / psychology
  • Child Behavior / psychology*
  • Child Development*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cognition
  • Cohort Studies
  • Depression / complications
  • Depression / psychology*
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Maternal Behavior / psychology*
  • Mother-Child Relations*
  • Parenting / psychology
  • Poverty*
  • United Kingdom