Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Expectant fathers should receive prenatal care, support, study finds

Date:
May 12, 2011
Source:
University of Missouri-Columbia
Summary:
Researchers have found that stress related to pregnancy uniquely affects the health of expectant fathers, which in turn, influences the health of expectant mothers and their infants. Health services should incorporate counseling and assessments for men and women to reduce stressors and promote positive pregnancy outcomes, experts say.

A University of Missouri researcher has found that stress related to pregnancy uniquely affects the health of expectant fathers, which in turn, influences the health of expectant mothers and their infants. Health services should incorporate counseling and assessments for men and women to reduce stressors and promote positive pregnancy outcomes, says ManSoo Yu, assistant professor in MU's Public Health Program.

Mental distress in pregnant women -- caused by anxiety, lack of social support or low self-esteem -- is associated with poor infant health. The importance of psychological and social factors in women is well documented, but few studies have examined these factors in men. Men play an important role in supporting and caring for pregnant women, Yu said.

"Too often, men are treated as observers of the pregnancy process," said Yu, assistant professor in the College of Human Environmental Sciences. "Acknowledging and addressing the emotional well-being of men as well as women is recommended. Providing prenatal care for expectant fathers can encourage men to have a proactive role in pregnancy, which will allow for better maternal and infant health outcomes."

Yu found that men process pregnancy-related issues, including family problems, preparing for change and feeling overwhelmed, as financial stressors, whereas women consider them emotional stressors. Men and women also perceive support from their partners differently. In the study, men received more emotional support from their partners, and women received tangible support, through actions such as help with tasks or care. It's possible that women give more emotional support because they feel it is important while men give tangible support because they believe it is important.

"Understanding these differences will help practitioners provide better advice and services for expectant parents," Yu said. "For example, men could write budgets to alleviate financial stress and women can seek counseling to understand emotional stressors. Men and women can discuss and learn about potential stressors to become better partners and improve the health of each other and their infant."

To better understand men and women's emotions during pregnancy, the Prenatal Psychosocial Profile (PPP) was given to 132 expectant mothers and fathers. The PPP is a standard assessment, typically given only to expectant mothers to measure stress, support of their partner and self-esteem.

Another finding was that women had higher self esteem than men during pregnancy. Self-esteem is an important dimension especially during pregnancy, because lower self-esteem is related to substance use. In particular, finding ways to minimize men's self-criticism about their abilities may be important because, in the study, substance abuse was associated with emotional stress among men.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Missouri-Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. ManSoo Yu, Jane A. McElory, Linda F.C. Bullock, Kevin D. Everett. Unique perspectives of women and their partners using the Prenatal Psychosocial Profile Scale. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 2011; DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2648.2011.05628.x

Cite This Page:

University of Missouri-Columbia. "Expectant fathers should receive prenatal care, support, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110512132514.htm>.
University of Missouri-Columbia. (2011, May 12). Expectant fathers should receive prenatal care, support, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110512132514.htm
University of Missouri-Columbia. "Expectant fathers should receive prenatal care, support, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110512132514.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Researchers say women who diet at a young age are at greater risk of developing harmful health habits, including eating disorders and alcohol abuse. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

Newsy (July 29, 2014) If you've been looking for love online, there's a chance somebody has been looking at how you're looking. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

Newsy (July 29, 2014) Researchers have found certain facial features can make us seem more attractive or trustworthy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins