Psychological factors influencing mothers' decision on breastfeeding
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The aim of the study is to present factors influencing mothers' intention to breastfeed their babies and to describe changes over time in this respect. The study was based on the key theoretical model in health promotion - the theory of planned behavior developed by I. Ajzen. In the model the main factors influencing intention and behavior are: the individual's attitude, subjective norm and perceived behavioral control. Participants in the study were 60 adult pregnant women, of whom 30 intended to breastfeed their child (the health-promoting intention group), while the remaining 30 were undecided or did not intend to breastfeed (the comparative group). The study was prospective: stage 1 was carried out in the third trimester of pregnancy, and stage 2 - two months after the delivery. Semi-structured interviews and rating scales were used as research methods. The results were consistent with the planned behavior model. Moreover, the author proposed to supplement the model by the temporal dimension. Successful breastfeeding resulted in an improvement of attitudes perceived as well as in an enhancement of perception of social norms related to breastfeeding. On the other hand, failure was associated with a decrease in perceived behavioral control concerning this type of infant feeding. POST SCRIPTUM - Fragments of the author's previously published paper and monograph (2002, 2004) are included in this text.
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