Journal of Family & Community Medicine
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Year : 2003  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 31-38

Health education needs for pregnancy: A study among women attending primary health centers

Department of Family and Community Medicine, College of Medicine, King Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Parveen Rasheed
Department of Family & Community Medicine, College of Medicine, King Faisal University, P.O. Box 2114, Dammam 31451
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 23011978

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Objective: To find out the level of health awareness related to pregnancy and the sources of information among parous women visiting the Primary Health Centers in Al- Khobar. Methods: This is a cross-sectional study conducted at three Primary Health Centers in Al-Khobar during a two-week period in April 2001. Five hundred and eighty one parous women who were eligible for the study were interviewed with the help of a questionnaire. Results: A large proportion of the women were well informed about certain health issues of pregnancy such as dietary intake of essential foods like dairy products (74.7%), Protein-rich foods (71.4%) and fruits (68.2%), the hours of daily rest necessary (81.9%), the need for exercise (83.6%), the importance and timing of antenatal visits, the risk of smoking in pregnancy (99.3%) and proper spacing of babies (97.7%). However, many women had no knowledge of the importance of taking high-fiber foods (55.1%) to avoid constipation, the required dietary changes in early pregnancy to prevent nausea and vomiting, and the ill-effects of maternal smoking on the fetus, Rubella infection and advancing maternal age on the fetus. They were also not aware of the importance of the various antenatal procedures such as blood examination, breast-care during pregnancy and immunizations to prevent Tetanus and Rubella infection. A higher literacy level of the women was significantly correlated with better knowledge on certain health parameters. Physicians and nurses constituted poor sources of health information (35.6%). Conclusion: There is a need to restructure the Health Education programmes relating to pregnancy delivered through PHCs and the mass media for better knowledge among women of childbearing age can decrease pregnancy-related problems and improve perinatal outcome.

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Journal of Family and Community Medicine | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Online since 05th September, 2010