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2014 / VOL-04,ISSUE-04,OCTOBER -DECEMBER 2014

Factors leading to early weaning of infants: A Descriptive Survey

By  Umarani.J

Research Articles

Page:  1162-1166

Abstract

Breast milk is the priceless gift a mother can give to her baby. Weaning at the proper time forms an important milestone in the life of a child and contributes to its growth and development. But today early weaning has become a trend because of several reasons and has resulted in high child mortality rate in our country. The main aim of the present study is to assess the factors leading to early weaning among mothers of infants and to find an association between the factors leading to early weaning and selected demographic variables. The research design adopted was descriptive in nature. The study was conducted among 100 mothers of infants of Kotekar area, Mangalore. The samples were selected by non probability purposive sampling technique. After the approval from the Institution Ethics Committee, the data was collected using a closed ended questionnaire with 7 sections to assess the possible causes of early weaning. The baseline data revealed that 58% of the samples were in the age group of 25-31 years and most (43%) were Muslims. Majority (30%) of the participants completed primary education and 59% of them had only 1 child. Around 56% of the samples belonged to the joint families and 49% were homemakers. Majority (84%) of the mothers were from the middle class families and 66% weaned their infants before the age of 6 months. The study findings denote that miscellaneous factors (89%) like working mother, lack of knowledge, young mothers and inadequate breast milk secretion were the prime factors which lead to early weaning of the infants. The chi-square computed found that there is association between factors leading to early weaning and selected demographic variables like religion, education and occupation.Lack of knowledge, working mother, young mothers and inadequate breast milk secretion were identified through this study as the factors leading to early weaning. Mothers and infants could be benefited by conducting health teaching programs on the importance of exclusive breast feeding

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