Fear of childbirth and sense of coherence with their determinants in endangered and healthy pregnancies
More details
Hide details
Institute of Psychology, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Lublin, Poland
Corresponding author
Paula Emilia Złakowska   

Institute of Psychology, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Prezydenta Gabriela Narutowicza 12, 20-400, Lublin, Poland
J Pre Clin Clin Res. 2020;14(3):90-93
The growing number of Cesarean sections and the percentage of women dissatisfied with perinatal care are the one of the main problems of modern gynaecology in Poland. It seems that if women with a high fear of delivery and a low sense of coherence are scanned early enough, it can contribute to better psychological care and greater satisfaction while giving birth.

The aim of the study is to compare the level of fear of childbirth and sense of coherence between endangered and healthy pregnancies.

Material and methods:
The study was conducted in one centre in Lublin, Poland, which involved 29 women in endangered pregnancies. The comparative group consists of 30 women in healthy pregnancy, tested online. Antonovsky’s Sense of Coherence Scale (SOC) and Fear of Childbirth Questionnaire were used for the study.

The results showed that women in endangered pregnancy significantly differ in terms of the level of fear of delivery, comprehensibility, manageability and general sense of coherence from women who are not in endangered pregnancy. The Cohen’s d size indicates that women who are in high-risk pregnancy have a significantly higher level of fear of childbirth than women in healthy pregnancy. Cohen›s d index also indicates that women in endangered pregnancy have a significantly lower level of comprehensibility, manageability and general sense of coherence compared to the control group.

Screening pregnant women with ready-made questionnaires and providing professional psychological care can possibly prevent excessive escalation of childbirth anxiety and decrease the number of Cesarean sections. By increasing the sense of coherence, we can help in better management of pregnancy and improve the overall experience.

Złakowska PE. Fear of childbirth and sense of coherence with their determinants in endangered and healthy pregnancies. J Pre Clin Clin Res. 2020; 14(3): 90–93. doi: 10.26444/jpccr/126596
Saisto T, Halmesmäki E. Fear of childbirth: a neglected dilemma.Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2003; 82: 201–208.
Faisal-Cury A, Rossi Menezes P. Prevalence of anxiety and depression during pregnancy in a private setting sample. Arch Womens Ment Health. 2007; 10(1): 25–32. doi:10.1007/s00737–006–0164–6.
Areskog B, Uddenberg N, Kjessler B. Fear of childbirth in late pregnancy. Gynecol Obstet Invest. 1981; 12(5): 262–266. doi:10.1159/000299611.
Sarkar P, Bergman K, O’Connor TG, Glover V. Maternal antenatal anxiety and amniotic fluid cortisol and testosterone: possible implications for foetal programming. J Neuroendocrinol. 2008; 20(4): 489–496.
Sandman C, Wadhwa P, Glynn L, Chicz-Demet A, Porto M, Garite T. Corticotrophin‐releasing Hormone and Fetal Responses in Human Pregnancy. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1999; 897: 66–75.
Fink NS, Urech C, Berger CT, et al. Maternal laboratory stress influences fetal neurobehavior: cortisol does not provide all answers. J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2010; 23(6): 488–500. doi:10.3109/14767050903300985.
DiPietro JA, Novak MF, Costigan KA, Atella LD, Reusing SP. Maternal psychological distress during pregnancy in relation to child development at age two. Child Dev. 2006; 77(3): 573–587. doi:10.1111/j.1467–8624.2006.00891.x.
Wachholtz AB, Pargament KI. Migraines and meditation: does spirituality matter? J Behav Med. 2008; 31(4): 351–366. doi:10.1007/s10865–008–9159–2.
Sekizuka N, Nakamura H, Shimada K, Tabuchi N, Kameda Y, Sakai A. Relationship between sense of coherence in final stage of pregnancy and postpartum stress reactions. Environ Health Prev Med. 2006; 11(4): 199–205. doi:10.1007/BF02905279.
Alireza AY, Nasim S. Analysis of the relationship between sense of coherence and emotional intelligence in university students. Psychol Stud. 2011; 7(3): 51–73.
Antonovsky A. The structure and properties of the sense of coherence scale. Soc Sci Med. 1993; 36(6): 725–733. doi:10.1016/0277–9536(93)90033-z.
Putyński L, Paciorek M. Kwestionariusz lęku porodowego (KLPII) Wersja zrewidowana- Konstrukcja i właściwości psychometryczne. Acta universitalis Lodziensis, Folia Psychologica. 2008; 12: 129–133.
Melender HL. Experiences of fears associated with pregnancy and childbirth: a study of 329 pregnant women. Birth (Berkeley, Calif.) 2002; 29(2): 101–111.
Mohamamdirizi S, Mohamadirizi M, Mohamadirizi S. The comparison of fear of childbirth and sense of coherence among low-risk and high-risk pregnancy women. J Educ Health Promot. 2018; 7: 143. Published 2018 Nov 27. doi:10.4103/jehp.jehp_179_17.
Takegata M, Haruna M, Matsuzaki M, Shiraishi M, Okano T, Severinsson E. Antenatal fear of childbirth and sense of coherence among healthy pregnant women in Japan: a cross-sectional study. Arch Womens Ment Health. 2014; 17(5): 403–409. doi:10.1007/s00737–014–0415-x.
Antonovsky Unraveling the mystery of health: how people manage stress and stay well. Jossey-Bass Publishers, San Francisco; 1987.
Carlsson IM, Ziegert K, Nissen E. The relationship between childbirth self-efficacy and aspects of well-being, birth interventions and birth outcomes. Midwifery. 2015; 31(10): 1000–1007. doi:10.1016/j.midw.2015.05.005.
Ryding EL, Read S, Rouhe H, et al. Partners of nulliparous women with severe fear of childbirth: A longitudinal study of psychological well-being. Birth. 2018; 45(1): 88–93. doi:10.1111/birt.12309.
Sheen K, Slade P. Examining the content and moderators of women’s fears for giving birth: A meta-synthesis. J Clin Nurs. 2018; 27(13–14): 2523–2535. doi:10.1111/jocn.14219.
Alder J, Breitinger G, Granado C, et al. Antenatal psychobiological predictors of psychological response to childbirth. J Am Psychiatr Nurses Assoc. 2011; 17(6): 417–425. doi:10.1177/1078390311426454.
Goutaudier N, Bertoli C, Séjourné N, Chabrol H. Childbirth as a forthcoming traumatic event: pretraumatic stress disorder during pregnancy and its psychological correlates. J Reprod Infant Psychol. 2019; 37(1): 44–55. doi:10.1080/02646838.2018.1504284.
Striebich S, Mattern E, Ayerle GM. Support for pregnant women identified with fear of childbirth (FOC)/tokophobia – A systematic review of approaches and interventions. Midwifery. 2018; 61: 97–115. doi:10.1016/j.midw.2018.02.013.
Abdollahi S, Faramarzi M, Delavar MA, Bakouei F, Chehrazi M, Gholinia H. Effect of Psychotherapy on Reduction of Fear of Childbirth and Pregnancy Stress: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Front Psychol. 2020; 11: 787. Published 2020 May 26. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00787.
Söderquist J, Wijma B, Thorbert G, Wijma K. Risk factors in pregnancy for post-traumatic stress and depression after childbirth. BJOG, 2009; 116(5): 672–680.
Moghaddam Hosseini V, Nazarzadeh M, Jahanfar S. Interventions for reducing fear of childbirth: A systematic review and meta-analysis of clinical trials. Women Birth. 2018; 31(4): 254–262. doi:10.1016/j.wombi.2017.10.007.
Journals System - logo
Scroll to top