240533 Social Support and Outcomes of an Early Birth

Monday, October 31, 2011: 11:30 AM

Kate C. Riera, PhD , Department of Human Development and Family Studies, University of Delaware, Newark, DE
Sandra Hofferth, PhD , Department of Family Science, University of Maryland, College Park, College Park, MD
BACKGROUND: Adolescent pregnancy is strongly associated with poorer health behaviors and outcomes as compared with older mothers. Family social support may play an important role in improving these behaviors and outcomes for adolescents. This study examined maternal age, social support, and the health behaviors and outcomes of prenatal care, sexual risk-taking behavior, breastfeeding, and rapid repeat birth. METHODS: The study used combined data from the National Center for Health Statistics' National Survey of Family Growth 2002 and 2006-08. Multiple, logistic, and proportional hazards regression analyses were conducted to examine the relationship between family social support and health behaviors and outcomes for adolescent mothers. RESULTS: Among adolescents, residing with a parent was associated with a delay in initiation of prenatal care, B= 3.46, p = .02. For early adolescents this was associated with an even greater delay, B= 17.89, p = .03. Adolescents were less likely though to engage in high sexual risk-taking behavior if they resided with a parent (OR= -1.57, p = .0002) or a partner (OR= -.87, p = .036), as compared to not living with either. For adolescents and young adults, living with a spouse or any partner significantly reduced the risk of breastfeeding cessation during the first year (p < .0001 and p = .0002 respectively), however it increased the risk of rapid repeat birth (p= .0005 and p = .015). CONCLUSIONS: Results suggest that family social support may have both positive and negative effects on health behaviors and outcomes for adolescent mothers.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the association between family social support and health behaviors and outcomes for adolescent mothers. 2. Discuss the implications of the study findings for adolescent mothers’ social support and living arrangements.

Keywords: Adolescents, Health Behavior

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a PhD candidate in Family Science with a focus in Maternal and Child Health, researching adolescent pregnancy and childbearing.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.