Breastfeeding Practices in Kathmandu
Keywords:Breastfeeding, Infant nutrition, Breast milk, Kathmandu
Introduction: In spite of significant evidence on a number of important health benefits of breastfeeding, it has been seen that a vast number of infants in Nepal are not being breastfed appropriately based on standard recommendations. This study was conducted to evaluate the breastfeeding practices prevalent in Kathmandu.
Materials and Methods: This was across-sectional survey carried out over a period of 24 months from January 2011 to December 2012 on a convenient sample of children aged 6 months to 23 months when they were brought for treatment to Kathmandu Medical College and Teaching Hospital. Breastfeeding was defined according to the recent WHO guidelines and mothers were interviewed as per a structured questionnaire.
Results: There were 1250 children enrolled in the study, out of which almost all infants (99.7%, n=1246) received colostrum. Only 62.64% (n=783) babies received breast milk as their first food. Initiation of breastfeeding within one hour of delivery was done by 719 (57.5%) mothers. The median duration of exclusive breastfeeding was 3.8 months.
Conclusion: This study reflects that majority of infants in Kathmandu are still not fed in accordance with breastfeeding recommendations and guidelines. More attention should be given to a proper community-based program including subsequent monitoring of its implementation as exclusive breastfeeding has been proved to be one of the most effective ways to improve infant survival.
J Nepal Paediatr Soc 2014;34(2):96-99
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