DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18203/2394-6040.ijcmph20193432

Infant feeding practices among parturient women in rural communities of Anambra State, Nigeria

Oluchukwu Loveth Obiora, Pauline O. Ezenduka, Chuka Ifeanyi Umeonwuka

Abstract


Background: Infant feeding is an integral part of the reproductive process with important implications for the health of mothers and their babies. However, various practices exist in different communities. It is therefore pertinent to know the infant feeding practices among rural dwellers, as well as the factors that influence them.

Methods: This study was a cross sectional survey. A total of 372 volunteering parturient women were recruited using a multi-stage stratified sampling technique. Ethical approval and respondents’ informed consent was obtained. A self-developed and validated questionnaire was used to collect data. Descriptive and inferential statistics was used to analyse data.

Results: Findings revealed that majority (84.4%) of the respondents were aware of exclusive breastfeeding (EBF), but only about half (50.5%) ever practiced exclusive breastfeeding. Also, a significant percentage of the respondents introduced complimentary feeding to the baby immediately after birth while 29.3% of participants reported drinking palm wine which is mainly alcoholic to stimulate breast milk secretion. Occupation of parturient women was associated with the practice of EBF (p=0.002).

Conclusions: Almost half of our studied parturient women do not engage in EBF. There is need for health care workers to strategically educate parturient women and their significant others on the numerous benefits of exclusive breast feeding.


Keywords


Infant feeding practices, Parturient women, Exclusive breast feeding, Nigeria

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References


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