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Breastfeeding knowledge and practice of mothers with infants less than six months old, in Kosofe Local Government of Lagos State

A.A. Adebayo
O.O. Leshi
R.A. Sanusi


Background: Exclusive breastfeeding is the ideal for infants in the first six months, however the practice is low. The role of mothers' knowledge of breastfeeding on practise is not clear.This study was designed to assess knowledge and practice of nursing mothers concerning breastfeeding in the selected Local Government Area of Lagos State.

Methods: Three hundred and twenty one mothers with infants under 6 months of age were recruited from the Immunization clinics of two government hospitals in Kosofe Local Government Area (LGA). Semi-structured, self-administered questionnaire was used to obtain information on the socio-demographic characteristics, knowledge of breastfeeding as well as practice.

Results: About half (56%) of the mothers were Yoruba and 68.2% were Christians. Mean age of the respondents was 29.6± 3.5 years, 56% had tertiary education and 20% had secondary education and primary education respectively. About 69% had adequate breastfeeding knowledge, while 94.4% were aware of exclusive breastfeeding. About83%stated breast milk as the best foodfor their infants. Although 96.3% were currently breastfeeding, 38.3% gave infant formula to their children in the previous 24 hours.Exclusive breastfeeding was practiced only by 8.4% of the mothers, and 62.6% had introduced water. Only 18.7% had good breastfeeding practices.The relationship between knowledge and practice was not statistically significant, but between knowledge and practice of exclusive breastfeeding (p<0.05).

Conclusion: High awareness of EBF and adequate knowledge of breastfeeding did not translate into practice. Other determinants of practice of EBF must be identified by further research.

Keywords: Breastfeeding, Knowledge, Practice

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2805-4008
print ISSN: 0189-0913