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Story, L., & Parish, T. (2008). Breastfeeding helps prevent two major infant illnesses. The Internet Journal of Allied Health Sciences and Practice, 6(3).

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Article

Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices on Exclusive Breastfeeding in Adamawa, Nigeria

1Department of Natural & Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Arts/Science, American University of Nigeria, Yola, Adamawa State

2Department of Linguistics, Faculty of Arts, Faculty of Arts, University of Western Cape, Robert Sobukwe Rd, Bellville, Cape Town, South Africa


American Journal of Public Health Research. 2016, Vol. 4 No. 3, 112-119
DOI: 10.12691/ajphr-4-3-6
Copyright © 2016 Science and Education Publishing

Cite this paper:
Jennifer A. Tyndall, Richard Kamai, Daliya Chanchangi. Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices on Exclusive Breastfeeding in Adamawa, Nigeria. American Journal of Public Health Research. 2016; 4(3):112-119. doi: 10.12691/ajphr-4-3-6.

Correspondence to: Jennifer  A. Tyndall, Department of Natural & Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Arts/Science, American University of Nigeria, Yola, Adamawa State. Email: tyndalljen@yahoo.com

Abstract

Background: Despite the efficacy of the Early Exclusive Breastfeeding (EBF) approach to child nutrition in reducing child mortality, few nursing mothers in Nigeria are willing to adopt this method of feeding. Objective: This research was therefore undertaken in order to assess the Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices (KAP) on EBF of antenatal clinic attendees in North-eastern Nigeria. Study Design: Cross Sectional Community Survey. Methods: Two hundred and fifty expectant mothers attending the ANC clinical sessions at Specialist Hospital, Yola, Adamawa State, were recruited for this study. The mean age of the women was twenty eight. Data was generated from a corpus consisting of health talks and questionnaires on the respondents’ KAP on EBF during these clinical sessions at this health facility. Results: The results of the survey revealed the problems that inhibit or reduce the practice of exclusive breastfeeding to include the following: the assumption that colostrum is stale milk--84%; breast milk lacks sufficient nutrients--approximately 62%; and expressed breast milk is contaminated milk--just under 98%. With respect to the mother’s attitude to EBF, 60% believed that this method of feeding would flatten their breasts and 78% that EBF causes respiratory tract infections. Furthermore, over 64% thought that food supplements were ideal for infants and that EBF was suitable only for working mothers. Conclusion: These results clearly demonstrate the lack of awareness and education on EBF. From both a national and international perspectives, poor maternal nutrition, inadequate support from spouses, family and even nurses and doctors are some of the constraints that limit the rate of practicing exclusive breastfeeding. Public health initiatives on the benefits of EBF need to be addressed, particularly at antenatal clinics and also through outreach programs that target mothers in the rural communities who have limited access to health care.

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