Promoting Mental and Spiritual Health among Postpartum Mothers to Extend Breastfeeding Period
The purpose of this study was to study postpartum breastfeeding mothers to determine the impact their psychosocial and spiritual dimensions play in promoting full-term (6 month duration) breastfeeding of their infants. Purposive and snowball sampling methods were used to identify and recruit the study's participants. A total of 23 postpartum mothers, who were breastfeeding within 6 weeks after giving birth, participated in this study. In-depth interviews combined with observations, participant focus groups, and ethnographic records were used for data collection. The Data were then analyzed using content analysis and typology. The results of this study illustrated that postpartum mothers experienced fear and worry that they would lack support from their spouse, family and peers, and that their infant would not get enough milk It was found that the main barrier mothers faced in breastfeeding to full-term was the difficulty of continuing to breastfeed when returning to work. 81.82% of the primiparous mothers and 91.67% of the non-primiparous mothers were able to breastfeed for the desired full-term of 6 months. Factors found to be related to breastfeeding for six months included 1) belief and faith in breastfeeding, 2) support from spouse and family members, 3) counseling from public health nurses and friends. The sample also provided evidence that religious principles such as tolerance, effort, love, and compassion to their infant, and positive thinking, were used in solving their physical, mental and spiritual problems.