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Haptotherapy for children and parents: The potential effects and how it works A single-case sub-study and a qualitative sub-study

27 October 2021 | Research 2021 |

Terpstra R.
Keywords| affective contact| angry outbursts| Haptotherapy for children and parents| IJHH


The purpose of this study is to investigate the potential effects of haptotherapy, and how it works for children and their parents.

1. To what extent does the affective contact of parent and child change after having followed haptotherapy for children and parents (HCP)? 2. To what extent does the problematic behaviour of the child change after following HCP? 3. To what extent does the parents’ acceptance change after following HCP? 4. To what extent does the parenting stress change after following HCP? 5. Exactly how and why is HCP effective?

In the study at hand, a single-case based design and a qualitative design were used. In sub-study 1 the effects of the intervention were measured for an 11-year-old boy with angry outbursts. Data were collected by daily measurements (acceptance, frequency, intensity and duration of angry outbursts), weekly measurements (affective contact), pre, interim and post measurements (parenting stress, problem behavior) and interviews with mother and the therapist. Sub-study 2 involved a qualitative study in the form of semi-structured in-depth interviews. In order to gain more insight into HCP methodology and its effect on parenting stress and child behavior, interviews were held with four participants who had followed and completed haptotherapy for children and parents up to a year ago.

Data analysis of study 1 showed an increase in affective contact, less frequency and intensity, a shorter duration of daily angry outbursts and a decrease in behavioral problems and parenting stress. Mother’s acceptance remained constant. The decrease in frequency of the daily angry outbursts was followed by an increase in mother’s affective contact with herself. Moreover, all the respondents of study 2 had a positive experience with haptotherapy and most of the problems were resolved. The conclusion of the study in question is that haptotherapy appears to be a promising treatment for children with mild problem behavior and their parents. There are indications for hypotheses that can be researched in further studies.

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Volume 9

No. 2
  • Publication date:
    October 27, 2021
  • Volume:
  • No.:
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How to cite (apa)
Terpstra, R. (2021). Haptotherapy for children and parents: The potential effects and how it works A single-case sub-study and a qualitative sub-study. In International Journal of Haptonomy and Haptotherapy (Vol. 9, Issue 2, pp. 10-19).
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