Knowledge, attitude and practice towards exclusive breast feeding among lactating mothers in a South Indian Hospital

Arunadevi V, Viswanathan S


Background: Exclusive breast feeding (EBF) isconsidered when the infant does not receive any additional food or nutriment other than breast milk. Aims and Objectives: The object of the study was to assess knowledge, attitude and practice towards EBF among lactating mothers in a south Indian hospital. Materials and Methods: Thiscross-sectionalstudy was conducted among 300 mothers, attending outpatient department of a tertiary care hospital, Karpaga Vinayaga Institute of Medical Sciences over a period of one year. They were administereda structured questionnaire which sought such information as age, educationalstatus, occupation, initiation of breast feeding, prelacteal feeding and knowledge and practice of exclusive breast feeding. Results: Exclusive breast feeding was given for six months by 77.3% of study population. Their knowledge to start early breast feeding wasgood (57.7%). Formula milk was the most commonly used top milk (25.7%). Not enough breast milk (38%) and baby didn’t drink well (15.3%) were the main reasons for stopping breastfeeding. Conclusion: Exclusive breastfeeding during approximately the first 6 months of life with continued breast feeding through at least the second half of infancy is associated with reduced risk of adverse outcomes in mother and infant.

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