Risk for impaired parenting

Risk for impaired parenting

Domain 7. Role relationship
Class 1. Caregiving roles
Diagnostic Code: 00057
Nanda label: Risk for impaired parenting
Diagnostic focus: Parenting

Nursing diagnosis, also known as healthcare-related diagnoses, is a concept used by nurses and other health care professionals to determine and communicate an individual’s risk of developing an illness or a problem that can be managed and treated through nursing interventions. Nursing diagnosis includes identification of risk factors and causes associated with a particular health condition, which can be used to formulate an effective intervention plan. One of these diagnoses is Risk for Impaired Parenting, which is primarily based on the parental environment or foundations, resources, and parenting styles which can all have a negative effect on children if not appropriately managed.

NANDA Nursing Diagnosis Definition

NANDA International defines Risk for Impaired Parenting as “the state in which a parent/caregiver is at risk for not providing adequate physical, emotional, or psychological nurturing”. The parent does not have the necessary resources or skills to function effectively as a parent, and this threatens the safety, well-being and development of their children.

Risk Factors

Risk factors for impaired parenting include:

  • Substance abuse: Parents who are struggling with substance abuse may not be able to offer the nurturing and physical care necessary for the healthy development of their children.
  • Mental Health Problems: Mental health issues such as depression and anxiety can impede the ability of parents to provide nurturing and emotional support to their children.
  • Financial Hardship: Difficult financial situations often put strain on families and can prevent a parent from providing emotional support that their children need.
  • Lack of Parental Support: Lack of parenting skills, knowledge, or availability due to employmentOutside of the traditional family unit, young parents are particularly vulnerable to issues faced with parenting.
  • Cultural Background: Cultural and religious beliefs that dictate parenting style may cause stress on the parent or child and restrict open communication.
  • Low Socioeconomic Status: Living in poverty or unstable housing situations can lead to inadequate parenting, such as lack of growth opportunity or education resources.
  • Relationship Stress: Conflicts within the family environment can lead to neglectful parenting and lack of attachments between the parent and child.

At Risk Population

Parents who are at risk for impaired parenting include those in abusive relationships, those with mental health issues, those with limited financial resources and/or social supports, non-traditional families, young parents, single parents, and those with low socioeconomic status.

Associated Conditions

The associated conditions of impaired parenting can be wide ranging. These include physical neglect or abuse, psychological problems, academic difficulties, developmental delays, social issues, low self-esteem, and poor overall health.

Suggestions of Use

When dealing with a family where there is a risk of impaired parenting, healthcare providers should evaluate the family’s current coping skills, assess the family’s needs, and develop an individualized parenting plan. Specifically, healthcare providers should focus on providing parents with evidence based parenting classes, parenting skills training, home visits, or referrals to social work or community resources.

Suggested Alternative NANDA Nursing Diagnosis

Alternative NANDA nursing diagnoses for impaired parenting include:

  • Noncompliance: Noncompliance occurs when a parent is unable or unwilling to follow through with recommended interventions.
  • Ineffective Parenting: When a parent is having difficulty providing necessary guidance and supervision to a child, ineffectiveness could be the result.
  • Ineffective Family Coping: This diagnosis focuses on the family as a whole and their ability to come up with solutions to overcome adverse situations.
  • Powerlessness: Feelings of powerlessness to the task of parenting can lead to despair and disillusionment.

Usage Tips

Nursing diagnosis is an important part of the nursing assessment process and can help in identifying potential health risks among family members. It is essential to recognize and address potential risks before they increase in severity, so it is important to use the guidelines set by NANDA International to define nursing diagnosis.

NOC Outcomes

The Nursing Outcomes Classification (NOC) provides outcomes that nurses can use to measure the effectiveness of their care interventions. Outcomes specific to Risk of Impaired Parenting include:

  • Development of Functional Parenting Skills: This outcome measures the ability of a parent to adequately provide physical, emotional and psychological care to their child.
  • Knowledge of Infant Care Practices: This outcome measures a parent’s knowledge of feeding, bathing, diapering, dressing, handling and comforting the newborn.
  • Knowledge of Safety Practices: This outcome measures a parent’s understanding of safe handling of infants and their understanding of appropriate toys and objects.
  • Knowledge of Child Growth and Development: This outcome measures a parent’s knowledge of normal physical and emotional development of their infant.
  • Emotional Support of Family Members: This outcome measures a parent’s ability to provide emotional support to family members within the household.

Evaluation Objectives and Criteria

Evaluation objectives and criteria are important components in determining the success or failure of a healthcare professional’s interventions. In the case of Risk for Impaired Parenting, the following criteria must be met in order to assess the success of the intervention:

  • Does the parent have the relationship and communication skills necessary to provide adequate nurturing?
  • Does the parent demonstrate knowledge of normal child growth and development?
  • Can the parent provide a safe, nurturing home environment for their children?
  • Is the parent aware of health risks and environmental hazards their children may encounter?
  • Does the parent feel empowered and competent in the parenting role?

NIC Interventions

The Nursing Interventions Classification (NIC) provides interventions that nurses can use to provide care to a family with a risk of impaired parenting. Examples of NIC interventions include:

  • Parent Education: Educating parents on evidence-based parenting practices, including modeling, reinforcement, discipline techniques, and resiliency.
  • Family System Support: Providing support systems such as spouses/co-parents, extended family, and friends to provide guidance to the family.
  • Child Management Training: Teaching parents how to understand and manage the behavior of their children.
  • Crisis Intervention: Providing assistance during times of crisis in the family.
  • Environmental Management: Assisting the family with reducing environmental hazards in the home and providing resources to stabilize the family environment.
  • Referral: Referring the family to available community resources and programs to improve the functioning of parents and children.

Nursing Activities

Nursing activities related to the diagnosis of Risk for Impaired Parenting include:

  • Assessing the family’s ability to meet their children’s needs.
  • Assessing for signs of abuse, neglect, and violence in the family.
  • Identifying available resources for the family in their environment.
  • Developing and implementing a parenting plan.
  • Providing evidence-based instruction on parenting skills.
  • Coordinating referral services for the family.
  • Monitoring the progress of the family’s interventions and making necessary adjustments.


Risk for Impaired Parenting is a serious nursing diagnosis that healthcare professionals should be aware of as it can have an impact on the health and wellbeing of children. Healthcare professionals should take the necessary steps to evaluate the family’s situation and make sure they are equipped with the resources and skills they need to provide adequate physical, emotional and psychological care to their children.


  • What is Risk for Impaired Parenting?
    Risk for Impaired Parenting is a nursing diagnosis that refers to a parent’s inability to provide adequate physical, emotional, or psychological care for their children.
  • What are some risk factors for Risk for Impaired Parenting?
    Some of the risk factors for Risk for Impaired Parenting include mental health issues, substance abuse, financial hardship, cultural background, lack of parental support, and relationship stress.
  • Who is at risk for Risk for Impaired Parenting?
    Those who are most at risk for Risk for Impaired Parenting are those in abusive relationships, those with mental health issues, those with limited financial resources, non-traditional families, young parents, single parents, and those with low socioeconomic status.
  • What are some suggested interventions to address Risk for Impaired Parenting?
    Suggested interventions include parent education, family system support, child management training, crisis intervention, environmental management, and referral services.
  • What evaluation criteria is used to assess the effectiveness of interventions for Risk for Impaired Parenting?
    Evaluation criteria includes assessing the parent’s relationship and communication skills, knowledge of normal child growth and development, ability to provide a safe and nurturing home environment, and awareness of health risks.