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Prelacteal feed: practices and beliefs

Author: 
Navjot Kaur and Jasbir Kaur
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Background and objectives: Breastfeeding is the most natural way of meeting the infant’s nutritional demands due to which exclusively breastfeed for a period of at least 6 is encouraged. But still there is a common practice in some cultures to give pre-lacteal feeds. Objective: To study the practices of pre-lacteal feeding and its associated beliefs among the primary care givers. Methods: An exploratory study was conducted on 100 primary care givers visiting Pediatric OPD which were selected by convenience sampling technique. Results: Total 48% received pre lacteal feed from which 50% received with in 1 hour of birth. Honey as pre lacteal feed was given by 75%, 52.1% of children received pre lacteal feed from their grandmother. About 50% gave prelacteal feed to develop qualities of prelacteal feed giver. Among the primary care givers with health related belief(s); 55.55% gave it to keep the mouth and throat of the baby moist. Those who had received counseling regarding exclusive breastfeeding, they did not give pre-lacteal feeds. Conclusion and Global health implications: Counseling regarding exclusive breastfeeding during antenatal visits can decrease the chances of prelacteal feed.

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