MOTHERS’ KNOWLEDGE, PRACTICE OF EXCLUSIVE BREAST FEEDING AND ANTHROPOMETRIC INDICES OF THEIR INFANTS IN ABA SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, ABIA STATE, NIGERIA

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MOTHERS’ KNOWLEDGE, PRACTICE OF EXCLUSIVE BREAST FEEDING AND ANTHROPOMETRIC INDICES OF THEIR INFANTS IN ABA SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, ABIA STATE, NIGERIA ()

 

ABSTRACT

This study assessed mothers’ knowledge, practice of exclusive breastfeeding and the anthropometric indices of their infants in Aba south local government area, Abia state, Nigeria. Five hundred (500) lactating mother-child pair randomly selected during their postnatal care visit in six out of seventeen health centers in the LGA participated in the study. Ethical clearance was obtained from the chief medical officer in the LGA and mothers’ consent was sought through the clinic head. Interviewer administered questionnaire was used to obtain information on the mothers’ socio-economic characteristics, knowledge and practices of exclusive breastfeeding (EBF). The anthropometric measurements of the children were taken using standard techniques and indices such as weight-for-age, weight-for length and length-for-age derived. The data obtained from the questionnaire were analysed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences, version16. The anthropometric indices of the children were compared with reference standards and the children subsequently classified as normal, underweight, stunted, wasted, and overweight. The results obtained showed that 68% of the urban and 53.6% of the rural respondents had adequate knowledge of EBF. About 24.7% of the urban and 20.1% of the rural respondents who had adequate knowledge of EBF practiced it. Adequate knowledge was significant to EBF practice (p<0 .05=”” 10.8=”” 16.4=”” 20=”” 28=”” 30-39=”” 30minutes=”” 33.3=”” 34.8=”” 35.3=”” 35.6=”” 3=”” 45.5=”” 55.6=”” 6=”” 8.8=”” 8=”” 90=”” a=”” ache.=”” age=”” and10.4=”” and10.8=”” and16.8=”” and7.6=”” and=”” area.=”” area=”” areas=”” between=”” birth=”” both=”” breast=”” breastfeeding=”” by=”” children=”” colostrum.=”” commitment=”” complementary=”” compliance=”” delivery.=”” delivery=”” during=”” ebf=”” ebm=”” education=”” encountered=”” expressed=”” factors=”” fed=”” feeding.=”” feeding=”” foods=”” for=”” from=”” given=”” half=”” higher=”” in=”” influenced=”” initiated=”” insufficient=”” introduced=”” job=”” lactation=”” main=”” major=”” maternal=”” milk=”” mode=”” months=”” more=”” mother=”” of=”” only=”” over=”” places=”” practiced=”” practices=”” prelacteal=”” preserved=”” problems=”” rate=”” reason=”” refrigeration.=”” respectively.=”” respectively=”” respondents=”” rural=”” s=”” six=”” socio-economic=”” stomach=”” stop=”” sup=”” than=”” that=”” the=”” their=”” three=”” to=”” total=”” urban=”” varied=”” was=”” were=”” within=”” years=””>rd

month of the child’s birth. The major reason for early introduction of complementary food was that breast milk alone was not adequate for the baby (38.5% and 39.5 % in urban and rural areas, respectively). Exclusively breastfed males and females aged 0-6 months in the urban area had mean weight of 9.40kg ±0.1 and 8.56kg±0.1 respectively relative to 8.01kg ±1.3 and 7.84 kg ±1.5 kg, respectively weighed by the non-exclusively breastfed(Non-EBF) counterparts. Similarly, the exclusively breastfed males and female children from 0-6 months in the rural area had mean weight of 9.21 kg ±0.9 and 8.35 kg ±0.6, respectively relative to 7.74 kg ±1.1 and 7.36 kg ±1.4 respectively weighed by the non-EBF breastfed counterparts. Based on the new WHO child growth standards, none of the EBF was malnourished. A few (11.1%) of non-EBF females aged 19-24 months in urban area and 16.7% of non-EBF male children aged of the same age in the rural area had low length-for-age. Low weight-for-age (underweight) was highest (26.7%) among non-EBF males aged 7-12 months in the rural area. The prevalence of wasting was 18.8% among non-EBF female children aged 7-12 months in the rural area. Based on the finding of the study, integrated effort on protection, promotion and support for EBF is recommended among others to enhance the full benefit of EBF in Abia state in particular and Nigeria in general.

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MOTHERS’ KNOWLEDGE, PRACTICE OF EXCLUSIVE BREAST FEEDING AND ANTHROPOMETRIC INDICES OF THEIR INFANTS IN ABA SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, ABIA STATE, NIGERIA ()

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