Socio-Cultural Factors Influencing Exclusive Breastfeeding Practices Among Women in Bakwu West District Ghana

ABSTRACT

Background: The world health organization (WHO) recommends 6 months of exclusive breastfeeding starting from birth with establishment of early breastfeeding within 30 minutes after delivery. However, introduction of supplementary fluids to infants is a common practice among women globally. Socio-cultural factors have been found to influence women’s decision to exclusively breastfeed depending on the community in which they live. The main objective of this study was to investigate social and cultural factors that influence the decision of women to exclusively breastfeed in the Bawku West District of Ghana. Methods: A cross-sectional study using mixed methods was carried out with both quantitative and qualitative methods. Four hundred and three women of reproductive age (from 15 to 45 years old) attending anti-natal care and with infant’s who are up to six months old participated in the study. Participants completed self-report questionnaires and participated in focus group discussions. Chi-square and logistic regression tests were used to determine the association and significance of exclusive breastfeeding and the socio-cultural factors associated with exclusive breastfeeding. Results: Results of the quantitative analysis showed that respondents with high level of knowledge on breastfeeding practices were 5.17 times likely to engage in good breastfeeding practices compared with those with low level of knowledge. Also, those who received help at home, or a community health nurse at the CHPS compound were 1.32 times likely to practice good breastfeeding practices compared with those who received help from family or friends. Results from the focus group discussions also showed that women were restricted to exclusively breastfeed due to cultural beliefs such as beliefs that colostrum paves way for ‘better milk’ to flow therefore mothers should not feed their babies with it. Also, some women believed that if a baby is not given other foods in addition to breast milk and the baby dies later, it means the baby died of hunger and that their ancestors will be unhappy. v Conclusion: There is a need to improve the strategies, education and training on information concerning exclusive breastfeeding in order to reach mothers with low knowledge about the benefits and optimal duration of exclusive breastfeeding. Additionally, negative attitudes and beliefs on breastfeeding should be addressed appropriately as they also influence exclusive breastfeeding. The Ghana health service should motivate health workers to continue to offer help in breastfeeding to lactating mothers after delivery

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APA

JOYCE, N (2021). Socio-Cultural Factors Influencing Exclusive Breastfeeding Practices Among Women in Bakwu West District Ghana. Afribary. Retrieved from https://afribary.com/works/socio-cultural-factors-influencing-exclusive-breastfeeding-practices-among-women-in-bakwu-west-district-ghana

MLA 8th

JOYCE, NDEKUGRI "Socio-Cultural Factors Influencing Exclusive Breastfeeding Practices Among Women in Bakwu West District Ghana" Afribary. Afribary, 08 Apr. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/socio-cultural-factors-influencing-exclusive-breastfeeding-practices-among-women-in-bakwu-west-district-ghana. Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

MLA7

JOYCE, NDEKUGRI . "Socio-Cultural Factors Influencing Exclusive Breastfeeding Practices Among Women in Bakwu West District Ghana". Afribary, Afribary, 08 Apr. 2021. Web. 20 Jul. 2024. < https://afribary.com/works/socio-cultural-factors-influencing-exclusive-breastfeeding-practices-among-women-in-bakwu-west-district-ghana >.

Chicago

JOYCE, NDEKUGRI . "Socio-Cultural Factors Influencing Exclusive Breastfeeding Practices Among Women in Bakwu West District Ghana" Afribary (2021). Accessed July 20, 2024. https://afribary.com/works/socio-cultural-factors-influencing-exclusive-breastfeeding-practices-among-women-in-bakwu-west-district-ghana