Traditional Practice of Women from India: Pregnancy, Childbirth and Newborn Care
This article describes maternal and child care practices among women from India. As in all cultures, certain beliefs exist surrounding what facilitates a good pregnancy and its outcome, as well as negative sanctions. These practices continue to influence many immigrant women to whom western practices are either unknown or unacceptable. An understanding of the traditional belief system of such women can case their adaptation into the Canadian and U.S. health care systems.
Available from: Saverio Stranges
- "The results of this study demonstrate that the odds of being overweight/obese increase with increasing age, corroborating the existing literature (Dinsa et al. 2012; Khandelwal and Reddy 2013; Gouda and Prusty 2014). This could be due to decreasing physical activity with age—especially among women—compounded with an increasing general access to high-calorie diets in India (Misra and Khurana 2008), as well as the high-calorie diets that are culturally recommended for Indian pregnant women (Choudhry 1997), the effects of which might linger beyond their gravid status. "
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ABSTRACT: We examined the nationwide geographic variation of overweight and obesity in India, as well as a range of potential correlates of excess body fat.
We conducted cross-sectional analyses of the 2005-2006 Indian Demographic Health Survey (IDHS), based on 161,050 individuals (age range 18-54 years). Multivariate logistic regression models were used to determine odds ratios (OR) of overweight and obesity compared to normal weight with associated correlates.
The overall prevalence was 12.4 % for overweight, 3.2 % for obesity, and 26.5 % for underweight. After multivariate adjustment, obesity was nearly thrice more likely in urban areas than in rural (OR 2.73, 95 % CI 2.53-2.94). Women were 2.71 times more likely to be obese than men (95 % CI 2.50-2.95). Better socioeconomic status was significantly associated with overweight and obesity. Overweight (OR 1.38, 95 % CI 1.31-1.47) and obesity (OR 1.46, 95 % CI 1.32-1.61) were most likely to occur in India's Southern zone, when controlled for confounding factors.
High-risk estimates for overweight/obesity in urban settings, along with socioeconomic prowess in India and the resulting nutritional transition make a compelling case for public health policy on healthy lifestyles to avert the growing burden of non-communicable diseases associated with overweight/obesity.
- "for doctor's appointments. During this time, the primary care of the newborn, along with housework, is assumed by other female relatives (Choudhry, 1997). Research suggests cultural traditions are protective and may be key components in prevention of depression (Stern & Kruckman, 1983). "
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ABSTRACT: To explore Asian Indian mothers' perspectives of postpartum depression (PPD) and mental health help-seeking behavior.
Qualitative exploratory design.
Using convenience sampling, postpartum mothers were recruited through flyers posted in public places and on social media sites. Postpartum depression risk was assessed with the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) prior to qualitative interviews. Content analysis methods were used to extract themes from participant narratives.
Twelve self-identified, married, Asian Indian mothers, aged between 29 and 40 years, living in Northern California, who gave birth to a healthy infant within the last 12 months, took part in this study. Scores on the EPDS indicated two participants were at an increased risk for developing PPD. Content analysis revealed two emerging themes: (1) Culture-specific postpartum practices and ceremonies and their role in maternal-infant postpartum recovery; and (2) Maternal mental health help-seeking behavior.
Nurses taking care of women during the extended prenatal and postpartum period have the unique opportunity to build rapport with their patients which can offer a window of opportunity to educate and help dispel myths about PPD symptoms and treatment. To promote successful maternal-infant outcomes, PPD education should be initiated at the first prenatal appointment, continue during the pregnancy, and be incorporated into well-baby visits through the first postpartum year. Education should include signs and symptoms of PPD as well as importance of timely mental-health help-seeking.
Available from: Davidson H Hamer
- "Therefore, extra precautions regarding the placenta should be taken. A similar study of traditional care practices in India and Tanzania also reported that the placenta should be buried to safeguard the child from evil spirits [16,51]. "
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ABSTRACT: Global policy regarding optimal umbilical cord care to prevent neonatal illness is an active discussion among researchers and policy makers. In preparation for a large cluster-randomized control trial to measure the impact of 4% chlorhexidine as an umbilical wash versus dry cord care on neonatal mortality in Southern Province, Zambia, we performed a qualitative study to determine local perceptions of cord health and illness and the cultural belief system that shapes umbilical cord care knowledge, attitudes, and practices.
This study consisted of 36 focus group discussions with breastfeeding mothers, grandmothers, and traditional birth attendants, and 42 in-depth interviews with key community informants. Semi-structured field guides were used to lead discussions and interviews at urban and rural sites. A wide variation in knowledge, beliefs, and practices surrounding cord care was discovered. For home deliveries, cords were cut with non-sterile razor blades or local grass. Cord applications included drying agents (e.g., charcoal, baby powder, dust), lubricating agents (e.g., Vaseline, cooking oil, used motor oil) and agents intended for medicinal/protective purposes (e.g., breast milk, cow dung, chicken feces). Concerns regarding the length of time until cord detachment were universally expressed. Blood clots in the umbilical cord, bulongo-longo, were perceived to foreshadow neonatal illness. Management of bulongo-longo or infected umbilical cords included multiple traditional remedies and treatment at government health centers.
Umbilical cord care practices and beliefs were diverse. Dry cord care, as recommended by the World Health Organization at the time of the study, is not widely practiced in Southern Province, Zambia. A cultural health systems model that depicts all stakeholders is proposed as an approach for policy makers and program implementers to work synergistically with existing cultural beliefs and practices in order to maximize effectiveness of evidence-based interventions.
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