Determinants of breastfeeding practices among mothers in Malawi

a population-based survey

Roselyn Chipojola, Gabrielle T Lee, Hsiao-Yean Chiu, Pi-Chen Chang, Shu-Yu Kuo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

BACKGROUND: High rates of early initiation and exclusive breastfeeding have been reported in Malawi, yet the underlying factors are unknown. Our objective is to examine the determinants of breastfeeding practices for mothers of infants less than 24 months old in Malawi.

METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted using nationally representative data from the 2010 Malawi Demographic and Health Survey. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was used.

RESULTS: Of 7282 women, 95.4% initiated breastfeeding within 1 hour after birth; thereafter 71.3% of women practiced exclusive breastfeeding, 6.1% predominantly breastfed, and 1.9% chose bottle feeding exclusively. The odds of early initiation were higher among women with frequent antenatal care visits and multiparous mothers. Similarly, frequent antenatal care visits and hospital delivery were positive determinants for exclusive breastfeeding. Infants at 6 months of age were more likely to predominantly breastfeed than they were at 1 month. The odds of bottle feeding were higher among women who were educated, who delivered at a hospital.

CONCLUSIONS: Optimal breastfeeding practices are highly prevalent in Malawi. Health care practice emphasizing frequent antenatal care visits that provide breastfeeding education and breastfeeding support in hospital care after childbirth are important for sustaining breastfeeding.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Health
Early online dateJul 11 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 11 2019

Fingerprint

Malawi
Breast Feeding
Mothers
determinants
Population
infant
Prenatal Care
Bottle Feeding
cross-sectional study
regression analysis
logistics
health care
Parturition
Surveys and Questionnaires
health
education
Cross-Sectional Studies
Logistic Models
Regression Analysis
Demography

Keywords

  • early breastfeeding
  • breastfeeding determinants
  • Malawi
  • exclusive breastfeeding
  • bottle feeding
  • breast milk
  • antenatal visits
  • sustainable breastfeeding practices
  • prenatal breastfeeding education

Cite this

Determinants of breastfeeding practices among mothers in Malawi : a population-based survey. / Chipojola, Roselyn; Lee, Gabrielle T; Chiu, Hsiao-Yean; Chang, Pi-Chen; Kuo, Shu-Yu.

In: International Health, 11.07.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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