142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

National survey of attitudes towards breastfeeding: U.S. males ages 21-44

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Monday, November 17, 2014 : 3:15 PM - 3:30 PM

Sarah Van Wagenen, MPH , Mobile Coach, LLC., Provo, UT
Brianna Magnusson, PhD, MPH , Health Science Department, Brigham Young Unviersity, Provo, UT

Background: Lack of familial support, particularly from fathers or partners, has

been identified by the U.S. Surgeon General as a barrier to breastfeeding. Although

partners have been identified as an important source of breastfeeding support,

research on what U.S. men’s knowledge about and attitudes towards breastfeeding

is limited.

Methods: We conducted an internet panel survey of 502 U.S. males aged 21-44

years, including the 17-item Iowa Infant Feeding Attitude Scale (IIFAS) and a series of

demographic questions adapted from the BRFSS. Frequencies, proportions and means,

were calculated and Analysis of Variance used to test differences in the mean IIFAS

scale score across demographic groups. A Multiple linear regression model was used to

identify predictors of IIFAS score.

Results: The mean IIFAS score in our sample was 57 (SD=8.13) out of a possible 85.

College graduates, men 40-44 years, and those in married couples scored higher on the

IIFAS. Fathers scored significantly higher on the test than non-fathers (p=0.007), and a

significant trend was seen with education (college highest, p=0.0034) and race (White

highest, Other lowest, p=0.01). After adjusting for race and education, fathers scored

1.62 points higher than non-fathers, while other non-Hispanic males scored 2.58 points

lower after adjusting for education and fatherhood status.

Conclusions: Male participants in the sample demonstrated good knowledge and

neutral to moderately positive attitudes about breastfeeding. Increased understanding

of men’s attitudes toward breastfeeding may inform interventions to encourage support

of breastfeeding in this population.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate U.S. menís knowledge about and attitudes towards breastfeeding. Identify differences in knowledge about and attitudes towards breastfeeding across sociodemographic characteristics.

Keyword(s): Breastfeeding, Child Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I hold a master's in public health and focused my thesis and studies on maternal and child health, specifically breastfeeding. This abstract presents the results of my Master's thesis where I was responsible for the design, data collection and analysis of results.
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.