عنوان مقاله [English]
Background and Objective: Exclusive breastfeeding up to 6 months after birth is recommended by the World Health Organization in order to increase infants' survival and reduce the rate of their diseases. This study was carried out aimed to investigate the relationship between prenatal intention to exclusive breastfeeding and maternal practice within 6 months after delivery in Kashan.
Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional and analytical study was conducted in 2014 on 224 primiparous pregnant women referred to Health Centers of Kashan. The samples were randomly selected from 16 health centers in the city of Kashan. Data were collected and analyzed using a questionnaire containing demographic characteristics and questions related to the constructs of theory of planned behavior.
Results: The mean maternal age was equal to 24.9 years. Among the pregnant women participating in the study, 86.6% of them intended to continue exclusive breastfeeding up to 6 months of the infants' age. Among these mothers, 89.7% and 70.1% continued exclusive breastfeeding up to three months and six months, respectively. From 13.4% of mothers with no intention of exclusive breastfeeding, 86.7% and 64.7% did exclusive breastfeeding up to the first three and six months of age, respectively. There were significant positive correlations respectively between the intention of exclusive breastfeeding in pregnant women with the constructs of perceived control behavior, attitude, subjective norms and knowledge.
Conclusion: Considering the results of this study, the mothers' intention for exclusive breastfeeding during pregnancy is an important predictor of continuing this type of feeding up to the six month of infant age, and the theory of planned behavior can be effectively used to design the improving interventions of exclusive breastfeeding.