Breastfeeding Among Low-Income Women With and Without Peer Support

School of Nursing, Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University, Tallahassee, USA.
Journal of Community Health Nursing (Impact Factor: 0.48). 02/1998; 15(3):163-78. DOI: 10.1207/s15327655jchn1503_4
Source: PubMed


This research examined the effect of peer support on breastfeeding duration and exclusivity (breastfeeding without supplements) in a population of low-income women during the first 3 months postpartum. Participants in the peer counselor group (n = 18) exhibited higher rates of exclusive breastfeeding across time than those without a counselor (n = 18), and more exclusive breastfeeding was associated with long duration overall. Mother's career plans had the greatest effect on duration of breastfeeding. Women who intended to return to work, attend school, or both breastfed 6 to 9 weeks less than participants who intended to stay home. Attendance at a breastfeeding class and knowing someone who had breastfed was significantly correlated with a longer duration of breastfeeding. Nutritionists from the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Program were the primary source of breastfeeding information. Two main factors discouraged women from breastfeeding: returning to work, school, or both and the perception of a diminished milk supply. Greater emphasis should be placed on prenatal breastfeeding education for low-income women, and their mothers and grandmothers should be included. Peer support is one important component of social support in the area of breastfeeding that community health nurses (CHNs) can utilize. CHNs are in a unique position to assist working mothers, provide support, and develop educational programs to enhance breastfeeding success in this population.

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Available from: John Curtin, Jun 30, 2015
    • "as DHA throughout the population are perhaps important interventions to promote cognitive devel - opment . Interventions such as peer counselling pro - grammes , which provide new mothers with the emotional and informational support to continue breastfeeding , have been shown to significantly increase rates of breastfeeding ( Kistin et al . 1994 ; Arlotti et al . 1998 ) . section and part of the implication section , reviewed and revised the manuscript , and approved the final manuscript as submitted . Kristen P . Kremer : Ms . Kremer drafted parts of the introduction and discus - sion sections , reviewed and revised the manuscript , and approved the final manuscript as submitted ."
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    ABSTRACT: This study investigated whether the nurturing hypothesis - that breastfeeding serves as a proxy for family socio-economic characteristics and parenting behaviours - accounts for the association of breastfeeding with children's academic abilities. Data used were from the Child Development Supplement of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, which followed up a cohort of 3563 children aged 0-12 in 1997. Structural equation modelling simultaneously regressed outcome variables, including three test scores of academic ability and two subscales of behaviour problems, on the presence and duration of breastfeeding, family socio-economic characteristics, parenting behaviours and covariates. Breastfeeding was strongly related to all three tests scores but had no relationships with behaviour problems. The adjusted mean differences in the Letter-Word Identification, Passage Comprehension) and Applied Problems test scores between breastfed and non-breastfed children were 5.14 [95% confidence interval (CI): 3.14, 7.14], 3.46 (95% CI: 1.67, 5.26) and 4.24 (95% CI: 2.43, 6.04), respectively. Both socio-economic characteristics and parenting behaviours were related to higher academic test scores and were associated with a lower prevalence of externalising and internalising behaviour problems. The associations of breastfeeding with behaviour problems are divergent from those of socio-economic characteristics and parenting behaviours. The divergence suggests that breastfeeding may not be a proxy of socio-economic characteristics and parenting behaviours, as proposed by the nurturing hypothesis. The mechanism of breastfeeding benefits is likely to be different from those by which family socio-economic background and parenting practices exert their effects. Greater clarity in understanding the mechanisms behind breastfeeding benefits will facilitate the development of policies and programs that maximise breastfeeding's impact. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
    Maternal and Child Nutrition 07/2015; DOI:10.1111/mcn.12200 · 3.06 Impact Factor
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    • "Nonetheless, the significance of contact with a peer counselor cannot be underestimated. This finding is consistent with the findings of previous studies (Arlotti et al., 1998; Dennis et al., 2002; Gill, 2009; Gill et al., 2007a; Humphreys et al., 1998; Meier "
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    • "It is reported that 38.9% of low-income women initiate breastfeeding in the hospital compared to 66.1% of women from middleand high-income groups [2]. In addition; rates of exclusive breastfeeding are even lower in low-income populations , minority/racial groups, and adolescents [3]. When women initiate breastfeeding, the majority of breastfed infants are weaned before they are three months of age. "
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