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Factors in the Initiation and Longevity of Breastfeeding in Adolescent Mothers

Little, Laci
Thompson, Joslyn
Purpose: The project purpose is to conduct a systematic review of available research on factors affecting breastfeeding in adolescent mothers. Specifically, this systematic review will evaluate factors supporting the decision of adolescent mothers to initiate breastfeeding, and factors supporting their longevity and success of breastfeeding. Background: Breastfeeding is recognized as the optimal form of nutrition for infants and promoted by many professional health organizations. Due to the importance of breastfeeding on the overall health and development of infants and the health benefits for mothers it is necessary to identify ways to increase breastfeeding initiation and duration with adolescent mothers. The breastfeeding rate of adolescent mothers is significantly less than those 20 years of age and older. Methods: Systematic reviews published between January 2000 and December 2014 were identified through an electronic database search utilizing the following databases: CINAHL, PubMed, Cochrane, and Medline ProQuest. The database search yielded 11 systematic reviews, six were found eligible for inclusion. Results: Study findings were categorized into 7 supporting factors: generalized emotional, esteem, and social network support, mother and partner of the adolescent mother support, expert lactation support, adolescent specific breastfeeding education, early RN support, school-based programs, and preconception care. Conclusions: Interventions need to be multi-faceted programs incorporating emotional, esteem, and social network support. Experts need to be skilled in lactation support and teaching adolescents. Nurse support and the mothers and partners of adolescents play significant role in initiation and duration of breastfeeding. More research in this area is needed.
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