A survey in Indonesia of 536 couples with babies up to 6 months old found a positive correlation between fathers actively seeking information about child nutrition and the immediate initiation of breastfeeding after the birth (within 1 hour). Only 59% of the fathers, however, reported such information seeking.
Similarly, involvement by fathers in discussions at home about infant health and nutrition correlated with reports of exclusive breastfeeding in the last 24 hours. Only 23% of the fathers reported being involved in such discussions.
Exclusive breastfeeding correlated with support from healthcare facilities and with fathers’ involvement in discussions to similar extents. In contrast, the initiation of breastfeeding was much more strongly correlated with support from healthcare facilities.
The researchers conclude that providing fathers with more information antenatally and during the six months could encourage higher rates of breastfeeding initiation and exclusive feeding.
Februhartanty J, Muslimatun S, Shankar AH, Djakababa N & Suradi R (2020), Paternal roles in breastfeeding in Jakarta, Indonesia: A mixed-method approach, Indonesian Journal of Human Nutrition
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