A comparative study of breast feeding and complimentary food practices in catchment area of urban and rural health centres of Community Medicine Department, Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal

Jeewan S. Meena, Soumitra Sethia, Vivek Nagar, Aditya Thakur, Vishwanath Aarutagi, Sharad Tiwari


Background: Scientific research has clearly proved that breastfeeding provides the most suitable nutrition to the baby, protects against infections, allergies, promotes physical, physiological, motor-mental and psycho-social growth and development. Also it benefits the mother in various ways like reducing anemia and breast and ovarian cancers and helps in fertility control. The study was conducted to assess and compare the knowledge and practice regarding breastfeeding among mothers of infants in urban and rural area.

Methods: This community based descriptive cross sectional study on 450 mothers of infant (0-12 completed months) residing in six wards of urban health centre and twenty three villages of block of rural health centre of Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal. Study was undertaken for the period of 1 year (November 2016 to October 2017). Study participants were interviewed by home visits using semi structured questionnaire.

Results: Maximum mothers 40% in rural and 35.1% mothers in urban area age group 21-23 year. 39.1% mothers in rural area provided colostrums to their child compared to 50.6% in urban areas (p=0.0178). In rural area 60% mothers gave breast milk to their child on demand, 25% within 1-2 hours & 15.1% within 2-3 hours. In urban area 80% mothers gave breast milk on demand, 12.8% within 1-2 hours & rest within 2-3 hours.

Conclusions: There was significant difference in breastfeeding practices in rural and urban area. Breastfeeding on demand was found to be more in urban area as compared to rural area.


Breastfeeding, Rural, Urban, Bhopal, Knowledge, Practice

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