Perspectives of youth-support professionals on encouraging healthy eating in adolescent pregnancies

SOLTANI, Hora, MARVIN-DOWLE, Katie and BURLEY, Victoria (2019). Perspectives of youth-support professionals on encouraging healthy eating in adolescent pregnancies. Evidence Based Midwifery, 17 (3), 84-91.

Soltani_PerspectivesOfYouth-support(VoR).pdf - Published Version
All rights reserved.

Download (277kB) | Preview
[img] PDF (Can't archive accepted version)
Soltani_PerspectivesOfYouth-support(AM).pdf - Accepted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only
All rights reserved.

Download (186kB)
Official URL:


Background. Nutrition during pregnancy has been identified as an important modifiable factor to reduce adverse outcomes in adolescent pregnancies. Young women are supported during their pregnancies by a variety of professionals with both clinical and non-clinical roles. Professionals with a non-clinical support role provide practical and emotional support for young women and often have longer lasting professional relationships with their clients. For this reason, this study aims to explore the perspectives of these professionals on how young women can be encouraged to improve their diet during pregnancy. Ethics. Ethical approval for this study was granted by Sheffield Hallam University Ethics Committee in July 2016. Methods. This exploratory, qualitative study recruited eight youth-support professionals to take part in semi-structured interviews. Recruitment and interviews were conducted by the lead author during February 2017, with project supervision and triangulation of data completed by the other two authors. Interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed. Interview transcripts were loaded into NVivo 11 software to facilitate analysis and emerging themes identified. Results. Five overarching themes were identified from the data: perceptions of dietary pattern; connection with baby; family and social stability; building relationships; and service availability. Youth-support professionals felt that young women encountered numerous complex barriers to eating healthily during pregnancy. Their lives are frequently chaotic and lack a stable partner and family relationships. They suggested that young women often needed specific practical support to make improvements, such as being accompanied to health appointments. There was also some concern that further cuts to services for this group would make it more difficult for vulnerable young women to access help. Conclusions. A higher level of consistent, holistic support delivered by joined-up networks of professionals is needed to help young women achieve healthier pregnancies. Further research is necessary to understand the context of young women’s lives, how this relates to their experiences of pregnancy, and what type of interventions or resources would have the biggest impact in supporting healthy behaviours.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1110 Nursing
Page Range: 84-91
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2019 13:16
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 02:56

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics