Child health promotion and protection among Mexican mothers

Martina Raquel Gallagher, Sara Gill, Elizabeth Reifsnider

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


For numerous reasons, children of Mexican descent experience many health disparities. One strategy for addressing these disparities is to increase health promotion and protection behaviors that mothers use with their preschool children. Limited literature is available on such practices used by mothers of Mexican descent with their healthy preschool children. This study explored child health promotion and protection practices used by mothers of Mexican descent. A naturalistic design, guided by Spradley's ethnographic interview techniques, was selected for this study. The sample included 9 Mexican-descent mothers from an urban U.S. community with healthy preschool children. Despite significant challenges, participants promoted and protected the health of their preschool children by al cuidado (taking care) and by being al pendiente (being mindful) of balancing the health of their children's bodies, minds, and souls. Understanding these mothers' approaches allows the creation of culturally sensitive health programs that can build on existing maternal strengths.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)588-605
Number of pages18
JournalWestern Journal of Nursing Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Aug 2008


  • Child health
  • Cultural values
  • Health promotion
  • Mexican

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


Dive into the research topics of 'Child health promotion and protection among Mexican mothers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this