Parents' postnatal sense of security (PPSS): development of the PPSS instrument

Scand J Caring Sci. 2007 Mar;21(1):118-25. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-6712.2007.00442.x.


Background: There is a need to develop an instrument that measures both the parents' experiences and sense of security during the first postnatal week. No instrument measuring positive dimensions which can be influenced and supported by the postnatal health care has been developed.

Objective: The aim of the study was to develop a specific instrument to assess both mothers' and fathers' postnatal sense of security concerning the first postnatal week.

Design: The study has a methodological and developmental design and was carried out in four steps: construction of the items, face validity, data collection and data analysis.

Settings and participants: One hundred and thirteen mothers who had given birth in hospitals in southern Sweden and 99 fathers comprised the study participants.

Data analysis: Statistical analysis, testing for construct validity with explorative factor analysis, internal consistency reliability and comparative validity was carried out.

Results: The parents' postnatal sense of security (PPSS) instrument, mother's version, was reduced from 37 to 18 items (explained variance 66.8%, Cronbach's coefficient alpha 0.88) comprising the following dimensions: a sense of the midwives'/nurses' empowering behaviour, a sense of general well-being, a sense of affinity within the family and a sense that breast feeding was manageable. The father's version was reduced from 36 to 13 items (explained variance 69%, Cronbach's coefficient alpha 0.77), and comprised the following dimensions: a sense of the midwives'/nurses' empowering behaviour, a sense of the mother's general well-being including breast feeding, a sense of general well-being and a sense of affinity within the family.

Conclusions: The PPSS instrument is valid and reliable and the only specific instrument measuring postnatal sense of security that is useful for both parents. The instrument needs to be further evaluated.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Postpartum Period*
  • Pregnancy
  • Safety*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*