Ear infection and infant feeding practices
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Feeding practices were studied in 128 infants aged 18 months and below with middle ear infection, belonging to the low socio-economic group. By the age of one year, 117 (91.4%) had acquired the infection. At the onset of the first episode, 105 (82.0%) were breast-fed, 42 not receiving any other milk. There were no differences in the feeding practices between infants who had single and those who had multiple episodes. Ninety-six infants were being given water by spoon or bottle and 42, semisolids by spoon. Among the 105 breast-fed infants, in 93 (88.6%), the infants’ heads were often flat during feeding. In contrast, in the 86 infants on ‘top’ feeds 53 (61.6%) of the mothers said that they kept the infants’ head raised during feeding. The difference was significant (x2 = 53.18, P < 0.001). Mothers should avoid feeding infants with the latter’s head flat, although the former may adopt any comfortable position.
KeywordsEar infection Otitis media Breastfeeding Infant feeding
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