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Psicologia: Reflexão e Crítica

Print version ISSN 0102-7972


KLEIN, Vivian Caroline; GASPARDO, Cláudia Maria  and  LINHARES, Maria Beatriz Martins. Pain, self-regulation and temperament in high risk preterm newborns. Psicol. Reflex. Crit. [online]. 2011, vol.24, n.3, pp.504-512. ISSN 0102-7972.

High risk preterm newborns are exposed to unavoidable painful experiences in Neonatal Intensive Care Units. In spite of their biological immaturity, they are able to perceive and react to pain stimuli. Repetitive exposure to pain has a negative impact on the development and may increase the infant's vulnerability, affecting self-regulatory processes. Biobehavioral reactivity to pain is an indicator of self-regulation and it is associated to the child's temperament. Preterm infants need pharmacological and non-pharmacological strategies for pain relieving. Moreover, they need a context of synchronic interaction with their parents which must be adapted to their temperament characteristics. Health professionals may play an important role in supporting external regulation for those infants, promoting pain relief and preventing development problems.

Keywords : Pain; Premature Birth; Reactivity-stability; Temperament.

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