Internet usage of women attempting pregnancy and pregnant women in the Netherlands

Sex Reprod Healthc. 2019 Oct;21:9-14. doi: 10.1016/j.srhc.2019.04.005. Epub 2019 Apr 23.


Objectives: Research focused on Internet behavior by women attempting pregnancy and pregnant women is scarce. Some research has been done in other countries, however it cannot be assumed those results also apply to Dutch women.

Study design: A descriptive cross-sectional study was performed using an Internet-questionnaire among women attempting pregnancy and pregnant women.

Main outcome measures: The aim of this study was to identify the Internet behavior of women attempting pregnancy and pregnant women in the Netherlands.

Results: In total, 365 women completed the questionnaire. Of these, 95.6% used the Internet as an information source before or during their pregnancy. Most searched topics were fetal development, lifestyle and pregnancy as well as birth complications. Over 90% of the women thought the information found was reliable and based pregnancy related decisions on this information. However, only 50.1% of the women discussed the information found with their caregiver. Of the respondents, 76.2% thought a reliable website is needed provided by the caregivers.

Conclusions: A vast majority of Dutch women attempting pregnancy and Dutch pregnant women use the Internet to search for information and to make decisions about their pregnancy, however they were not satisfied with the information available online. A reliable, informative, interactive and up-to-date website is deemed necessary.

Keywords: Discussing information with caregiver; Internet use; Need for website; Pregnant women; Reliability Internet; Women attempting pregnancy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Consumer Behavior
  • Consumer Health Information / standards
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Decision Making
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Information Seeking Behavior*
  • Internet / statistics & numerical data*
  • Netherlands
  • Physician-Patient Relations
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnant Women*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult