Presentation Information

Amy Brown

Maternal trait personality and breastfeeding duration: the importance of confidence and social support

  • Speaker: Amy Brown , PhD, Professor
  • Presentation Type:
  • Duration: 30 Mins
  • Credits: .5 CERP, .5 Nursing CEU, .5 CME

Maternal characteristics such as self-efficacy, knowledge and confidence are known to enable women to breastfeed, but little is known about the influence of maternal trait personality on breastfeeding. A study was undertaken to explore associations between breastfeeding duration, maternal personality and maternal experiences of breastfeeding. Results showed that mothers who reported high levels of extraversion, emotional stability and conscientiousness were significantly more likely to initiate and continue breastfeeding for a longer duration. Mothers high in these traits reported breastfeeding experiences (e.g. greater levels of support, lower embarrassment) that are conducive to breastfeeding. Maternal personality may affect experience of breastfeeding and thus be a useful tool in antenatal support to recognize women who may need extra, directed support.