Stress, Fears of Childbirth, and Couvade Syndrome Among First-Time Expectant Fathers

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Patcha Suwanarod
Nantaporn Sansiriphun
Chavee Baosoung


          The purpose of this descriptive correlational research was to explore couvade syndrome and the correlation of stress, fears of childbirth with couvade syndrome in first-time expectant fathers. The subjects were selected following the inclusion criteria and consisted of 85 first-time expectant fathers who brought their wives to the antenatal clinic at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital and Chiang Mai Health Promotion Center region 1 Hospital, from March to May 2020. The research tools comprised demographic data, Couvade syndrome questionnaire, Suanprung Stress Test-20 (SPST-20), Paternal Fear of Childbirth Scale (P-FOCS). Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and Pearson’s product moment correlation coefficient.

          Results of the study revealed that most of subjects (90.60%) had low level of couvade syndrome. Mean score of couvade syndrome was 34.98 (SD = 24.35). Subjects had couvade syndrome from 1 to 49 symptoms. The most common of physical symptoms included increased appetite, weight gain, food cravings, back pain and fatigue accounted for 68.23, 64.70, 63.53, 56.47 and 54.12% respectively. The most common of psychological symptoms included more happy, early morning waking up, sleeping less than usual, sleeping more than usual, and feeling irritable accounted for 90.59, 56.46, 51.76, 50.59 and 49.41% respectively. Stress had a significant positive correlation with couvade syndrome (r = .61, p<.01). Fears of childbirth had a significant positive correlation with couvade syndrome (r = .39, p<.01). The findings suggest that the result of this study can provide basic information to develop effective nursing care plans that reduce the couvade syndrome in first-time expectant fathers.


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