Abstract

BACKGROUND: The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic and the derived changes in maternity care have created stress and anxiety among pregnant women in different parts of the world. In times of stress and crisis, spirituality, including spiritual and religious practices, may increase.

OBJECTIVE: To describe if the COVID-19 pandemic influenced pregnant women's considerations and practises of existential meaning-making and to investigate such considerations and practices during the early pandemic in a large nationwide sample.

METHODS: We used survey data from a nationwide cross-sectional study sent to all registered pregnant women in Denmark during April and May 2020. We used questions from four core items on prayer and meditation practices.

RESULTS: A total of 30,995 women were invited, of whom 16,380 participated (53%). Among respondents, we found that 44% considered themselves believers, 29% confirmed a specific form of prayer, and 18% confirmed a specific form of meditation. In addition, most respondents (88%) reported that the COVID-19 pandemic had not influenced their responses.

CONCLUSION: In a nationwide Danish cohort of pregnant women, existential meaning-making considerations and practices were not changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Nearly one in two study participants described themselves as believers, and many practised prayer and/or meditation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103716
JournalMidwifery
Volume123
ISSN0266-6138
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2023. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

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