Exclusive breastfeeding practices among women attending a private health facility in Lagos, Nigeria
Background: Exclusive breast feeding (EBF) is an effective tool of child survival. While many mothers understand the importance of breast feeding, some circumstances may hinder the practice.
Objective: To determine the pattern and factors influencing EBF among women attending a private health facility in Lagos, Nigeria.
Methodology: One hundred and twelve mothers with children aged twelve months or less were interviewed through a questionnaire on their breastfeeding practices.
Results: At the end of second month, two-fifths of the babies were still exclusively breastfed. This dropped to one-fifth by the end of the fourth month. At the end of six months, less than onetenth of subjects were still exclusively breastfed (3.6%). No association was found between breastfeeding pattern and variables such as gender of infants, place of
delivery, maternal age, type of delivery and number of antenatal visits. On the contrary there was an association with following variables: birth order among mother siblings, prenatal and postnatal feeding advice.
Conclusion: The rate of exclusive breast feeding among mothers for
the recommended six months was very low (3.6%). Antenatal and postnatal programmes that will encourage mothers to practice exclusive
breastfeeding should be strengthened.
Key words: Exclusive breast feeding, survival analysis, practice, private hospital, mother