Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science


Health and Rehabilitation Sciences


Dr. Anita Cramp


The World Health Organization and Health Canada recommend mothers exclusively breastfeed to six-months postpartum for the many benefits provided to both the mother and the child. The purpose of this study was to examine maternal psychosocial factors that may predict exclusive breastfeeding practice. A 104 primiparous mothers participated in the study by completing online surveys once antepartum and at one-month postpartum. The results showed exclusive breastfeeding rates at one-month postpartum were lower than breastfeeding intentions reported antepartum. Help-seeking was similar among both exclusively and non- exclusively breastfeeding mothers. Conversely, self-efficacy and grit were higher among exclusively breastfeeding mothers both antepartum and postpartum. This study is the first report of antepartum grit as a predictor of exclusive breastfeeding. The findings from this study provide novel insights into exclusive breastfeeding predictors and lay the groundwork for future studies into psychosocial factors as predictors of exclusive breastfeeding behaviour.