Prevalence and determinants of cessation of exclusive breastfeeding in the early postnatal period in Sydney, Australia
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Background: Optimal breastfeeding has benefits for the mother-infant dyads. This study investigated the prevalence and determinants of cessation of exclusive breastfeeding (EBF) in the early postnatal period in a culturally and linguistically diverse population in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. Methods: The study used routinely collected perinatal data on all live births in 2014 (N = 17,564) in public health facilities in two Local Health Districts in Sydney, Australia. The prevalence of mother’s breastfeeding intention, skin-to-skin contact, EBF at birth, discharge and early postnatal period (1–4 weeks postnatal) were estimated. Multivariate logistic regression models that adjusted for confounders were conducted to determine association between cessation of EBF in the early postnatal period and socio-demographic, psychosocial and health service factors. Results: Most mothers intended to breastfeed (92%), practiced skin-to-skin contact (81%), exclusively breastfed at delivery (90%) and discharge (89%). However, the prevalence of EBF declined (by 27%) at the early postnatal period (62%). Younger mothers (<20 years) and mothers who smoked cigarettes in pregnancy were more likely to cease EBF in the early postnatal period compared to older mothers (20–39 years) and those who reported not smoking cigarettes, respectively [Adjusted Odds Ratio (AOR) =2.7, 95%CI 1.9–3.8, P <0.001 and AOR = 2.5, 95%CI 2.1–3.0, P <0.001, respectively]. Intimate partner violence, assisted delivery, low socio-economic status, pre-existing maternal health problems and a lack of partner support were also associated with early cessation of EBF in the postnatal period. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that while most mothers intend to breastfeed, and commence EBF at delivery and at discharge, the maintenance of EBF in the early postnatal period is sub-optimal. This highlights the need for efforts to promote breastfeeding in the wider community along with targeted actions for disadvantaged groups and those identified to be at risk of early cessation of EBF to maximise impact.
International Breastfeeding Journal
© The Author(s) 2017. Open Access. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
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