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Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 92, Issue 2, pp 105–108 | Cite as

Overcoming Barriers to Breastfeeding: Suggested Breastfeeding Promotion Programs for Communities in Eastern Nova Scotia

  • S. Eileen HoganEmail author
Article

Abstract

The 1994 rate of initiation of breastfeeding in eastern Nova Scotia was 41%. The purpose of this study is to assess both perceived barriers to breastfeeding as well as the need for programs to promote breastfeeding in this region. Seventy randomly selected subjects (67 F, 3 M) responded to a questionnaire about regional breastfeeding practices. Results showed that perceived barriers to breastfeeding included lack of knowledge about breastfeeding management (35.8%) and lack of support (29.9%). Barriers to exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months included going back to work (76.5%) and lack of support (39.2%). To promote exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months, participants recommended access to: prenatal classes (98.5%), nurse follow-up following hospital discharge (95.3%), and availability of lactation consultants (88.3%). When proposed promotion programs were implemented, breastfeeding initiation increased to 60.5% and duration rates increased to 4 months (90.2%). Regional barriers to breastfeeding can be partly alleviated through educational and support programs.

Résumé

En 1994, le taux de recours à l’allaitement maternel en Nouvelle-Écosse était de 41 %. Notre étude visait à évaluer les obstacles perçus à l’allaitement et la nécessité d’avoir des programmes de promotion dans la province. Soixante-dix personnes sélectionnées au hasard (67 femmes, 3 hommes) ont répondu à un questionnaire portant sur les pratiques régionales en matière d’allaitement. Les deux principaux obstacles perçus étaient le manque de connaissances sur la gestion de l’allaitement (35,8 %) et le manque d’appui (29,9 %). Les obstacles à l’allaitement exclusif pendant les six premiers mois étaient le retour au travail (76,5 %) et le manque d’appui (39,2 %). Pour favoriser l’allaitement exclusif pendant les six premiers mois, les répondants ont suggéré: l’offre de cours prénataux (98,5 %), le suivi par une infirmière à la sortie de l’hôpital (95,3 %) et l’accès à des consultantes en lactation (88,3 %). Après la mise sur pied des programmes de promotion proposés, le taux de recours à l’allaitement maternel est passé à 60,5 %, et la durée de l’allaitement, à quatre mois (90,2 %). Les obstacles régionaux à l’allaitement maternel peuvent donc être surmontés en partie par des programmes de sensibilisation et d’appui.

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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Nutrition and Food ScienceAcadia UniversityWolfvilleCanada

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