The purpose of this study is to examine the factors affecting the rate and duration of breastfeeding.
We analyzed the data from the year 2000 Korea National Fertility Survey that was collected through direct interviews. In particular, the mothers who delivered their last child and the child was under 1 year of age from January 1998 to June 2000 (N=1,066) were analyzed via a logistic model to assess the factors affecting the breastfeeding rate. Among the study subjects, those who had initiated breastfeeding (N=740) were analyzed through Cox's proportional hazard model to evaluate the factors affecting the duration of breastfeeding.
The multivariate logistic model showed that the delivery type and the baby's birth-weight have a statistically significant influence on the breastfeeding rate. Women who delivered their babies through Cesarean section were less likely than others to breastfeed. In contrast, the women whose babies weighed 2.5 Kg or more were more likely than others to breastfeed. The results obtained from the survival analysis are as follows : the higher the mother's education level, the shorter is the breastfeeding duration. The mother's work status played a significant role in the early termination of breastfeeding. Women aged 35 or older showed a longer breastfeeding duration than the younger age groups, whereas the maternal age was not a significant factor in affecting whether or not a mother would breastfeed.
Reducing the cases of operative delivery (Cesarean section) and low weight births, enlightening young and highly educated women on breastfeeding and improving the environment for breastfeeding on the job are important strategies to encourage women to breastfeed.
Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health 02/2006; 39(1):74-80.