Knowledge, Attitude, and Behavior of Breastfeeding among Urban Women in Chennai-A Cross-Sectional Study | Abstract

International Journal of Medical Research & Health Sciences (IJMRHS)
ISSN: 2319-5886 Indexed in: ESCI (Thomson Reuters)


Knowledge, Attitude, and Behavior of Breastfeeding among Urban Women in Chennai-A Cross-Sectional Study

Author(s):K Saravanan, B Krishna Prasanth*, S Hariharan, P Deepika and Aishwarya PM

Background: Appropriate breastfeeding practices play a prominent role in reducing morbidity and mortality among children below 5 years of age. Exclusive breastfeeding is important for a child’s health and growth. However, there seems to be a disdain for breastfeeding practices among emergent countries. This study intends to assess the knowledge, attitude, and behavior towards breastfeeding among nursing mothers from Chennai. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study conducted among 200 mothers of children aged 0-1 year. The participants were selected through purposive sampling from postnatal OPD of government hospitals in Chennai. Breastfeeding practices were assessed using a self-administered questionnaire after getting informed consent. Results: Almost 52% of the mothers had fair knowledge and only a minimal (3%), had poor knowledge regarding breastfeeding practices. Most of the participants 173 (86.5%) believed that adequate feeding with breast milk played an important role in the long-term health of their children. Most of the mothers (77.5%) viewed breastfeeding as more convenient than formula feeding and around 73% of them felt that breastfeeding promoted bonding between the mother and their infants. Almost 72.5% of the study participants initiated breastfeeding as soon as they delivered. Only a minimal group of babies (7%) had received prelacteal feeds, the commonest being sugar water and honey. Almost 90.5% of newborns received colostrum as their first feed. Conclusion: This study inferred that there was only a fair knowledge about breastfeeding among the nursing mothers living in urban regions and also their attitude and behavior about breastfeeding were sub-optimal. This study also gives an insight into factors hindering optimal breastfeeding practices among young mothers. We must provide proper information, education, and communication to nursing mothers regarding proper breastfeeding. Henceforth this study identifies the need for public health education campaigns towards breastfeeding practices among nursing mothers living in emergent countries.

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