The effectiveness of internet and instant messaging approaches in promoting intention to breastfeed

Brigett Landry Scott, University of Southern Mississippi

Abstract

Breastfeeding rates for the southern portion of the United States are low compared to the rest of the country. This study sought to determine the effectiveness of electronic delivery of breastfeeding education compared to written education in regards to intention to breastfeed in a convenience sample of pregnant women in coastal Louisiana and Mississippi. The final sample included 147 women randomized into one of three groups to complete the six week education intervention study. Questionnaires measuring demographics, Need for Cognition Scale (NFC), the Iowa Infant Feeding Attitude Scale (IIFAS), and the IFI Feeding Intentions Assessment were utilized. MANCOVA was used to determine if differences existed between the experimental groups regarding participants' infant feeding intentions. No significant differences were found between groups; however, all three groups did show improvement in their intention to breastfeed scores. The participants in the text message group also showed more initiative in accessing educational lessons. These findings suggest that more research should be done to focus on ways to utilize text messages as part of breastfeeding educational programs.