Conference Contribution Details
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O' Leary, K; DiBlasi, Z; O' Sullivan, D
Overcoming Barriers to Well-being in Ireland Conference
The Effect of Keeping a Gratitude Diary on Well-being during Pregnancy: A Randomised Control Trial.
National University of Ireland, Galway
Poster Presentation
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Background: Positive psychology interventions, and in particular gratitude, have increasingly been shown to enhance health and wellbeing. This study examined the effectiveness of a gratitude intervention on psychological wellbeing during pregnancy.

Design: Randomised Controlled Trial

Participants: 72 women between 14 and 32 weeks pregnant from Cork University Maternity Hospital were randomised to the intervention (N=37) and control group (N=35).

Intervention: A daily diary kept over one month, in which participants were asked to list up to 5 things they felt grateful for.

Outcome measures: Outcome measures included the Prenatal Distress Questionnaire (PDQ), the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS), the Gratitude Scale (GQ-6), and exercise levels. These measures were conducted at baseline, at 2 weeks and 1 month.

Results: A total of 14 participants concluded the study. The results of mixed between-within analyses of variance demonstrated moderate to large effect sizes for the effect of the intervention on gratitude, social support, prenatal distress and exercise. Due to the small sample size at completion, the study may have lacked sufficient power to detect a significant effect.

Conclusions: Potential explanations for the study findings include recruitment and adherence issues, sample characteristics and constraints of the measures used. We discuss the applied implications and directions for future research that arise from these findings.