The aim of the course is to give adult psychiatrists some basic knowledge in infant psychiatry that has become in the recent years, very relevant to the understanding the link between brain development, early childhood experiences, pathophysiology of personality disorders in adulthood, and psychotherapeutic transferential processes.
The course will be built as follows:
The first part will cover very recent data on the impact of early experiences in general, and attachment experiences in particular, on brain development and development of a theory of mind and empathy. Concepts of resilience, vulnerability, bio-psycho-social risk and protective factors will also be explored in length. Through these basic concepts, we will show how infant psychiatry is linked to prevention of adult psychopathology, and how the early attachment experiences reflect themselves in the psychotherapeutic process.
The second part will be clinical and will illustrate the basic concepts learned in the first part. A clinical case will be presented to show the development of borderline personality disorder from early childhood to adulthood, its transgenerational transmission to the offspring through disturbed attachment relationship, and some of the processes that took place during the dyadic mother-infant psychotherapy. We will show how parenthood can become a new motivation for change.
The course applies who any adult psychiatrist who is interested in the field of developmental psychopathology, and no previous experience with young children is needed. Clinical experience with personality disordered patients will be an advantage.