Maternal and Child Health Journal

, Volume 15, Issue 8, pp 1316–1323

Association Between Health Beliefs and Health Behavior in Early Pregnancy

  • Tamás Bödecs
  • Boldizsár Horváth
  • Enikő Szilágyi
  • Marietta Diffellné Németh
  • János Sándor
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10995-010-0698-0

Cite this article as:
Bödecs, T., Horváth, B., Szilágyi, E. et al. Matern Child Health J (2011) 15: 1316. doi:10.1007/s10995-010-0698-0

Abstract

Folate-supplementation significantly reduces the risk of neural tube defects. The aim of this research was to reveal associations between health beliefs and folate -supplementation as well as other elements of health behavior among Hungarian women early in their pregnancy. Three-hundred and seven women in early pregnancy completed the second part of Health and Illness Scale. Factor structure of health beliefs was established and associations of factors with pregnancy planning, folate-intake, vitamin-intake, smoking-habits and alcohol-consumption were tested. A six factor health model was formulated; the factor named ‘mental capacities and abilities’ was associated with greater chance on folate-intake, vitamin-intake and prepared pregnancy, as well as a reduced chance of smoking. The factors ‘destiny’, ‘measures aiming at prevention’, and ‘relatives and acquaintances’ related to lower chance on folate-intake. The health belief factor representing Internal Health Locus of Control was associated with more than one component of healthy behavior, while factors of external dimensions (Powerful Others Health Locus of Control and Chance Health Locus of Control) were predictive on unhealthy behavioral tendencies. New approaches aiming to shift one’s health beliefs and health locus of control from external causes to internal dimensions are needed in order to reach greater openness towards health-improving interventions.

Keywords

Health beliefsFolate-supplementationHealth behaviorHealth locus of controlPregnancy

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tamás Bödecs
    • 1
  • Boldizsár Horváth
    • 2
  • Enikő Szilágyi
    • 3
  • Marietta Diffellné Németh
    • 1
  • János Sándor
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Health Visiting, Institute of Public Health, Recreation and Health Promotion, Faculty of Health SciencesUniversity of PécsSzombathelyHungary
  2. 2.Department of Midwifery, Institute of Nursing and Patient Care, Faculty of Health SciencesUniversity of PécsSzombathelyHungary
  3. 3.Department of PsychiatryCounty Vas Markusovszky HospitalSzombathelyHungary
  4. 4.Division of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Department of Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Public HealthUniversity of DebrecenDebrecenHungary