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Prenatal attachment and its association with foetal movement during pregnancy – A population based survey

      Abstract

      Objective

      To investigate the association between the magnitude of foetal movements and level of prenatal attachment within a 24 h period among women in the third trimester of pregnancy.

      Design

      a prospective population-based survey.

      Setting

      A county in central Sweden.

      Participants

      Low risk pregnant women from 34 to 42 weeks gestation, N = 456, 299 multiparous and 157 primiparous women.

      Measurements

      The revised version of the Prenatal Attachment Inventory (PAI-R) and assessment of the perception of foetal movements per 24 h in the current gestational week.

      Findings

      A total of 81 per cent of the eligible women completed the questionnaire. The overall sample of women found that the majority (96%) felt their baby move mostly in the evening. More than half of the respondents (55%) stated that they perceived frequent foetal movement on two occasions during a 24 h period, while almost a fifth (18%) never or only once reported frequent foetal movement in a 24 h period. Just over a quarter (26%) of respondents perceived frequent movement at least three times during a 24 h period. Perceiving frequent foetal movements on three or more occasions during a 24 h period, was associated with higher scores of prenatal attachment in all the three subscales. Key conclusion: Perceiving frequent foetal movements at least during three occasions per 24 h periods in late pregnancy was associated with prenatal attachment. Implications for practice: encouraging women to focus on foetal movements may positively affect prenatal attachment, especially among multiparous women >35 years.

      Keywords

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