Factors affecting intention to breastfeed among Syrian and Jordanian mothers: A comparative cross-sectional study

Department of Maternal-Child Health Nursing, School of Nursing, Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST), Irbid 22110, Jordan. .
International Breastfeeding Journal 07/2010; 5(1):6. DOI: 10.1186/1746-4358-5-6
Source: PubMed


Breastfeeding is considered the ideal method of infant feeding for at least the first six months of life. This study aimed to compare breastfeeding intention between Syrian and Jordanian women and determine factors associated with breastfeeding intention among pregnant women in these two countries.
A cross-sectional design was used to collect data from1200 pregnant women aged 18 years and above (600 participants from each country). A self- administered questionnaire was used to collect data on socio-demographic characteristics and breastfeeding intention.
Intention to breastfeed was reported by 77.2% of Syrian and 76.2% of Jordanian pregnant women. There was no significant difference in intention to breastfeed between Syrian women and Jordanian women. In both countries, women with a more positive attitude to breastfeeding, women with previous breastfeeding experience and women with supportive partners were more likely to intend to breastfeed. Syrian women with a monthly family income of more than US$200, younger than 25 and primiparous or having one child were more likely to report an intention to breastfeed their infants. Jordanian women with an education level of less than high school and not living with their family-in-law were more likely to intend to breastfeed.
In Syria and Jordan, a more positive attitude to breastfeeding, previous breastfeeding experience and presence of supportive husbands are associated with intention to breastfeed. These factors should be considered when planning programs designed to promote breastfeeding in these two countries.

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Available from: Mohammad Khassawneh
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    • "In this study, almost all mothers intended to exclusively breastfeed, similar to observations in neighboring countries such as Syria and Jordan [28]. The fact that women who intended to exclusively breastfeed at the time of delivery were more than three times more likely to do so than those who did not is not surprising. "
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    ABSTRACT: The proportion of mothers who exclusively breastfeed their babies up to 6 months remains low. Determinants of breastfeeding practices have been largely documented in high-income countries. Little evidence exists on possible predictors of breastfeeding behaviors in the Middle East. Our aim was to assess the prevalence of breastfeeding in Beirut and determine the factors that impact breastfeeding behavior in this population. Data for this longitudinal study is nested within a randomized controlled trial (RCT) assessing the impact of a 24-hour hotline and postpartum support film on postpartum stress. Healthy first-time mothers delivering in the capital Beirut between March and July 2009, were interviewed at 1--3 days and 8--12 weeks post delivery. A multiple logistic regression analysis was used to determine the factors associated with exclusive breastfeeding at 8--12 weeks postpartum. The overall breastfeeding rate at 8--12 weeks postpartum was 67%. The exclusive breastfeeding rate was 27.4%. Factors associated with exclusive breastfeeding included maternal work (OR=3.92; p-value<0.001), planned pregnancy (OR=2.42, p-value=0.010), intention to breastfeed (OR=3.28; p-value=0.043), source of maternal emotional support (OR = 1.87, p-value=0.039) and the use the postpartum support video, the hotline service or both (OR=2.55, p-value=0.044; OR=3.87, p-value=0.004 and OR=4.13, p-value=0.003). The proportion of healthy first-time mothers who exclusively breastfeed in Beirut is extremely low. Factors associated with breastfeeding behavior are diverse. Future research and interventions should target different levels of the maternal-child pair's ecosystem.Trial registration:, NCT00857051.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · BMC Public Health
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    • "The IIFAS has acceptable reliability and validity and has been tested in various populations including prenatal and postpartum women, low income women, fathers, students, health providers and health visitors although not in Latina women [24-29]. The scale has been adapted for use in Romania [30] and Croatia [31], and with Taiwanese [32], Jordanian, and Syrian women [33]. The IIFAS has also been used as a foundation for developing new scales for Chinese women [34] and Saudi women [35]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding until 6 months of age. Maternal attitudes toward infant feeding are correlated with chosen feeding method and breastfeeding duration. The Iowa Infant Feeding Attitude Scale (IIFAS) has been used to assess attitudes towards breastfeeding prenatally and is predictive of breastfeeding decisions in certain population groups. In a cohort of pregnant Latina women recruited from two hospitals in the San Francisco Bay Area (n=185), we administered the IIFAS prior to delivery. Information regarding feeding choice, maternal sociodemographic information, and anthropometrics were collected at 6 months and 1 year postpartum. Analysis of predictors for breastfeeding initiation, breastfeeding at 6 and 12 months and exclusive breastfeeding at 6 months were evaluated using multivariate logistic regression adjusting for potential confounders. In our cohort of Latina mothers, breastfeeding a previous infant was associated with breastfeeding initiation (OR 8.29 [95% CI 1.00, 68.40] p = 0.05) and breastfeeding at 6 months (OR 18.34 [95%CI 2.01, 167.24] p = 0.01). College education was associated with increased exclusive breastfeeding at 6 months (OR 58.67 [95% CI 4.97, 692.08] p = 0.001) and having other children was associated with reduced breastfeeding at six months (OR 0.08 [95%CI 0.01, 0.70] p = 0.02). A higher IIFAS score was not associated with breastfeeding initiation, breastfeeding at 6 or 12 months or exclusive breastfeeding at 6 months of age. Initial choices about breastfeeding will likely influence future breastfeeding decisions, so breastfeeding interventions should specifically target new mothers. Mothers with other children also need additional encouragement to maintain breastfeeding until 6 months of age. The IIFAS, while predictive of breastfeeding decisions in other population groups, was not associated with feeding decisions in our population of Latina mothers.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · International Breastfeeding Journal
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Approximately 52 % of babies in Saudi Arabia are breast fed for more than 6 months compared with approximately 96% in Egypt. Few studies compared the infant feeding of these two neighboring countries despite the similarities in their social systems. Objectives: The present study aimed to compare knowledge and attitude toward breastfeeding practices among Egyptian and Saudi mothers in Qassim region. Methods: A descriptive explorative study was conducted. The data was collected from 340 mothers (191 Egyptian and 149 Saudi) including socio-demographic data, mother’s knowledge and attitude towards breastfeeding and the practices. Results: exclusive BF was reported by 74.6% of Egyptian compared to 42.1% of Saudi mothers with highly statistically significant difference. The mean duration of breast feeding was 17.5 months among Egyptian compared to 8.1 months among Saudi mothers. Both Egyptian and Saudi mothers had a high level attitude toward BF practice. Conclusion: Research in infant feeding should be a health priority to improve the rate of breastfeeding and to minimize other inappropriate practices. Most of the Egyptian and Saudi participants who ceased breastfeeding attributed this to return to work; consequently governmental policies regarding longer leave for new mothers and child care centers inside large institutions should be considered. More effort is needed to support and encourage breast-feeding particularly in Saudi Arabia.
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