Characteristics of Exclusively Breastfeeding Mothers

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Characteristics of exclusively breastfeeding mothers were examined. Data were collected from 299 mothers delivering at a Midwest medical center (183 inpatient and 76 postdischarge). Mothers who breastfed were more likely to be white, married, have attained a bachelor's degree or higher, and have private insurance. Support from the baby's father was most important to the mothers. Breastfeeding mothers achieved higher scores on the Iowa Infant Feeding Attitude Scale (65.63 ± 6.91 of the 85), indicating more positive attitudes toward breastfeeding compared with formula-feeding (54.86 ± 6.53) and mixed-feeding (60.34 ± 7.64) mothers (P ≤ 0.001). Results suggest that demographics of breastfeeding mothers differ from those of mothers who use formulas to feed their babies.

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