Maternal grandmothers and support for breastfeeding
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This randomised control trial examines the role of grandmothers (maternal mother) or a close female confidante of the mother's own choice, in supporting breastfeeding. The intervention group mothers (n=30) were asked in the antenatal period to identify a close female confidante who could support them to breastfeed following the birth of their babies. Most mothers chose their own mother. The midwife visited both mother and confidante together during the antenatal period, to discuss breastfeeding. Control group mothers (n=42) followed the normal policy of care, typically an antenatal breastfeeding discussion with a midwife. Breastfeeding initiation and duration rates were analysed statistically. These results were supplemented with a brief telephone call to some of the mothers, and a questionnaire to the midwives. The intervention suggests an increased duration of breastfeeding in the intervention group (p=0.09). The phone calls and questionnaires suggest the mothers may have benefited from guidance in their choice of confidante. The intervention was well accepted and provided a valuable opportunity to contribute towards a supportive breastfeeding culture.
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