What is Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology?

The Association of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health


PPN Definition

“We find that prenatal and perinatal experiences have a profound impact on health and human behavior. Life is a continuum which starts not, as is commonly thought, at birth, but at conception. We see mother and child as fundamentally interconnected and understand that babies are sentient beings who are best nurtured when their mothers are provided with a supportive and healthy prenatal environment in which their choices are respected.”

PPN Psychology – “ is the discipline that studies the effects of stressful or overwhelming events, which occur from conception through the prenatal and perinatal (birth) developmental time periods”

PPN Psychotherapy – “is defined as treatment around an individual’s reactions to stressful or overwhelming events, because without intervention unresolved early traumas have the potential to become maladaptive and repetitive patterns throughout life.”

Wikipedia’s PPN Definition

“Prenatal and Perinatal  Psychology is the study of the psychological implications of the earliest experiences of the individual, before (prenatal) and during (perinatal) childbirth. Although theoretical and therapeutic approaches vary in their treatment of the topic, a common thread is the fundamental importance of prenatal and perinatal experiences in the shaping of the personality and future psychological development.”

PPN Assumptions

  • The developing child is capable of sensing, experiencing, and remembering as a conscious, aware being.
  • Stressful of traumatic prenatal and perinatal experiences/events will have lasting effects.
  • These lasting effects will be found in the development of an individuals personality, structure, and will be seen in his or her mental processes, emotions, behaviors, relationships, and physical health.


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