Preschool Language Development of Children Born to Women with an Opioid Use Disorder. (2021)
Type of ContentJournal Article
Increasing evidence suggests that prenatal exposure to opioids may affect brain development, but limited data exist on the effects of opioid-exposure on preschool language development. Our study aimed to characterize the nature and prevalence of language problems in children prenatally exposed to opioids, and the factors that support or hinder language acquisition. A sample of 100 children born to pregnant women in methadone maintenance treatment and 110 randomly identified non-exposed children were studied from birth to age 4.5 years. At 4.5 years, 89 opioid-exposed and 103 non-exposed children completed the preschool version of the Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF-P) as part of a comprehensive neurodevelopmental assessment. Children prenatally exposed to opioids had poorer receptive and expressive language outcomes at age 4.5 years compared to non-opioid exposed children. After adjustment for child sex, maternal education, other pregnancy substance use, maternal pregnancy nutrition and prenatal depression, opioid exposure remained a significant independent predictor of children's total CELF-P language score. Examination of a range of potential intervening factors showed that a composite measure of the quality of parenting and home environment at age 18 months and early childhood education participation at 4.5 years were important positive mediators.
CitationKim HM, Bone RM, McNeill B, Lee SJ, Gillon G, Woodward LJ (2021). Preschool Language Development of Children Born to Women with an Opioid Use Disorder.. Children (Basel, Switzerland). 8(4). 268-268.
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KeywordsCELF-P; child; language; methadone; neonatal abstinence syndrome; opioid; outcome
ANZSRC Fields of Research39 - Education::3903 - Education systems::390302 - Early childhood education
47 - Language, communication and culture::4704 - Linguistics::470402 - Child language acquisition
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