Factors influencing perception and knowledge of exclusive breast feeding practices among nursing mothers in rural area of Thane district of Mumbai

Abhay S. Srivastava, Kanchan B. Gawande


Background: Exclusive breastfeeding (EBF) is recommended as the best feeding alternative for infants up to six months and has a protective effect against mortality and morbidity. Exclusive breastfeeding (EBF) is one of the optimal infant and young child feeding practices. Globally, <40% of infants under 6 months of age are exclusively breastfed. According to NFHS4 data (2015 -16) the prevalence of EBF in the rural area of Maharashtra was 60.6% which was far less than the 100% recommended by the United Nation Children Emergency Fund. Objective: Study was conducted to find the mothers knowledge and perception on breast feeding practices and other factors which influences breast feeding practices in the study area. Methods: A cross sectional descriptive study was employed. From the population of 8000, by applying convenient sampling technique, 152mothers attending the Primary Health Centre with children less than 2 years of age were enrolled after taking informed consent. Result: The prevalence of exclusive breast feeding was 63.15%. There was a significant association between socio‑demographic characteristics of mothers such as occupation (p<0.05), type of family (p<0.05) and the practice of exclusive breastfeeding. Conclusion: As it was found that exclusive breast feeding was practiced well by mothers who were housewives which shows that employment was the major obstacles for breast feeding.


Exclusive breast feeding, Primigravida, Nursing mothers

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