A Study of Maternal Breast Feeding Issues during Early Postnatal Days
Background: The success in breast-feeding is dependent on early initiation and effective management of breast feeding problems during early postnatal days. Objectives: To identify breast feeding problems and their etiologies during early postnatal days until discharge from hospital. Methodology: Descriptive study done in a medical college hospital. One hundred and twenty mothers in early postnatal days were enrolled in the study. Sick mothers, sick neonates admitted in NICU for >24 hours and where breast-feeding was contraindicated were excluded. Data was collected by direct interview with the mother by the investigators and were entered in the proforma. The questionnaire contained general information of the mothers, self-reported and observed problems about breast feeding. The first interview was carried out within 12 hours of delivery after taking informed consent. Follow up interviews were done on 24 hourly basis until discharge. Data was analyzed statistically. Results: Mothers were aged between 22 to 40 years with more than half in 26-30 years range. Majority were homemakers and educated up to high school. 31(25.8%) were primi mothers. 64(53%) had vaginal and 56(47%) had caesarean deliveries. 61.6% of the mothers knew about colostrum and its benefits. Most (98.3%) of the mothers felt that there is a need for education about breast-feeding. Majority had initiated breast feeds within an hour or at least within 4 hours (LSCS mothers). Insufficiency of milk and problems with latching, positioning and sucking were some of the problems noted. Though most of the problems were resolved before discharge, few persisted until discharge. Perceived milk insufficiency, latching problems and breast problems were higher in primi and found to be statistically significant. Objective problems like poor positioning, sucking etc were higher among primi and caesarean mothers. Even problems that remained at discharge were also more among them. Conclusions: Most common problems were positioning, emphasizing the need for teaching/training. Primi and delivery by LSCS were found to have higher feeding problems emphasizing the need to focus on these high risk groups.
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