Mental Health and Psychosocial Well-Being among Children in Severe Food Shortage Situation


World Health Organization

Publication details

Number of pages: 8
Publication date: 2006
Languages: English, French, Spanish
WHO reference number: WHO/MSD/MER/06.1



A strong maternal-infant (or caregiver-infant) bond provided through psychosocial stimulation is essential for positive child development. The formation of this bond at the beginning of life is an essential step that sets the stage for cognitive, emotional, and social developments later in life. Feeding and other care practices provide opportunities for psychosocial stimulation and help to establish a positive attachment between caregiver and child.

The "fact sheet" on Mental health and severe food shortage situations highlights the importance of psychosocial considerations when addressing malnutrition and also highlights the fact that an inadequate diet can have an impact on the mental health of children.