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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 45-52

Prevalent infant feeding practices among the mothers presenting at a tertiary care hospital in Garhwal Himalayan region, Uttarakhand, India


1 Department of Pediatrics, Doon Medical College, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India
2 Department of Medicine, AIIMS, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India
3 Department of Pediatrics, Tirth Ram Shah Hospital, New Delhi, India
4 Department of Pediatrics, VCSGGMS and RI, Srinagar, Uttarakhand, India
5 Department of Kaya Chikitsa, Sri Sri College of Ayurvedic Science and Research, Bengaluru, India
6 Department of Biochemistry, KD Medical College, Mathura, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vyas Kumar Rathaur
Type 3, 5/1, AIIMS, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand - 249 203
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_413_16

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Introduction: There is paucity of studies on infant feeding practices from the rural areas of garhwal Himalayas of the state of uttarakhand. The present study was designed to assess the infant feeding practices in Garhwal region. Infant feeding practices have significant implications on a child's health. Early nutritional status especially during the first year of life has been shown to have a significant effect on child health and development. Optimal infant feeding practices are crucial for nutritional status, growth, development, health, and ultimately the survival of infants and young children. The study of infant feeding practices is essential before formulation of any interventional programme. Settings and Design: A study was conducted in HNB Base Hospital and Teaching Institute with the aim to assess the infant feeding practices and the prevalence of malnutrition in the study population reporting at the hospital in garhwal region of uttarakhand. Methods and Material: This is an observational cross sectional study. 275 infants were included in the study. After taking informed consent, case study forms were filled by interviewing the infants' mothers. Weight, length and head circumference of each infant was also measured. The information thus obtained was compiled, tabulated and analysed statistically. Results: The study findings revealed that 46.4% infants in the age group 0-5 months were breastfed within 1 hour of birth. 52.8% infants aged 0-5 months of were exclusively breastfed. 33.6% infants in age group 0-5 months received prelacteal feeds. 53.12% infants in age group 6-8 months received solid, semi-solid or soft food, in addition to breast milk. 53.33% infants were partially or fully bottle fed. Age appropriate feeding was found in 56% infants. The percentage of wasting, stunting and underweight in 0-5 months was 33.6%,30.4% and 36.8% respectively . The percentage of wasting, stunting and underweight in 6-11 months was 28%, 26.5% and 30.7% respectively. There appeared to be an association between longer duration of exclusive breastfeeding and lower prevalence of stunting and underweight at 6 months of age. Conclusions: This study shows that undesirable infant feeding practices are still prevalent in the community. Lower prevalence of stunting and underweight was observed in infants with longer duration of exclusive breastfeeding. A comprehensive plan to address the problems in infant feeding should be formulated. Antenatal counselling of mothers should be done. Revitalization of the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative(BHFI) in health facilities is recommended.


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