The realization of the exclusive breastfeeding intention for women can be associated with certain barriers to address, and the action plan designed to overcome these issues should include particular milestones to follow. While implementing certain changes in promoting the practice of exclusive breastfeeding among pregnant women and mothers, it is necessary to identify the most important barriers to respond to in detail. Some of the barriers are critical and need to be addressed in the first turn, and other barriers and strategies to cope with them are less significant.
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The first barrier to pay attention to is maternal education and the lack of knowledge regarding exclusive breastfeeding. This barrier can be overcome by providing additional training and education for women, and strengths are in using educational material for mothers. The second identified barrier is women’s HIV status, and the strength to overcome it is the provision of antiretroviral therapy and counseling for women who can openly state their status and receive medications and guidance to realize breastfeeding (Ratnayake & Rowel, 2018). The third barrier is the lifestyle of modern working women. It can be overcome through encouraging and reinforcing breastfeeding and guaranteeing the understanding of mothers and providing them with appropriate places to breastfeed babies.
An additional barrier to overcome is the lack of planning exclusive breastfeeding during women’s pregnancy that can be addressed through education and counseling. It is necessary to provide pregnant women with plans to prepare for exclusive breastfeeding with reference to purchasing necessary equipment and tools as well as to prepare them psychologically (Ratnayake & Rowel, 2018). Another barrier is discouraging exclusive breastfeeding in society that is addressed by spreading information in a community (Khatun et al., 2018).
Thus, providing pregnant women and members of their families with brochures and other information explaining the benefits of exclusive breastfeeding is important. These materials should be spread in healthcare facilities within a community. The final barrier to respond to is women’s poor attitudes toward the practice of breastfeeding (Victora et al., 2016). It is critical to provide encouragement and guidance and inform women about specifics of exclusive breastfeeding with reference to advantages and disadvantages of the process to guide on overcoming difficulties.
Milestones important for realizing the project include timing, visibility, and planning. It is important to guarantee that babies reach their milestones within appropriate timing through breastfeeding and contact with a mother. Visibility is realized by access to all required services and consultation. Planning for breastfeeding prepares a mother during 26-28 weeks of pregnancy (Victora et al., 2016).
The other group of milestones is associated with implementing the change. Thus, these milestones are the development of an educational program, designing brochures, and providing education for women. The educational program is developed by healthcare providers through determining the material to include in the program, consulting experts regarding the information to include, and designing program components.
The development of informative and educational materials for pregnant women and communities is realized through identifying information to put in brochures, designing brochures, and printing them (Abbass-Dick, Stern, Nelson, Watson, & Dennis, 2015). The provision of training and education for pregnant women is guaranteed after determining staff responsible for providing education, choosing a setting for educational sessions, and determining a schedule.
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The identification of barriers to address and the development of appropriate strategies allow for reaching the set milestones to implement the change. As a result, it is possible to promote effective education for pregnant women in order to support the practice of exclusive breastfeeding when certain obstacles are observed. Thus, the focus on barriers and milestones is significant to develop effective strategies and tasks for overcoming these issues and promoting the realization of the action plan.
Abbass-Dick, J., Stern, S. B., Nelson, L. E., Watson, W., & Dennis, C. L. (2015). Coparenting breastfeeding support and exclusive breastfeeding: A randomized controlled trial. Pediatrics, 135(1), 102-110.
Khatun, H., Comins, C. A., Shah, R., Islam, M. M., Choudhury, N., & Ahmed, T. (2018). Uncovering the barriers to exclusive breastfeeding for mothers living in Dhaka’s slums: A mixed method study. International Breastfeeding Journal, 13(1), 44.
Ratnayake, H. E., & Rowel, D. (2018). Prevalence of exclusive breastfeeding and barriers for its continuation up to six months in Kandy district, Sri Lanka. International Breastfeeding Journal, 13(1), 36.
Victora, C. G., Bahl, R., Barros, A. J., França, G. V., Horton, S., Krasevec, J.,… Group, T. L. B. S. (2016). Breastfeeding in the 21st century: Epidemiology, mechanisms, and lifelong effect. The Lancet, 387(10017), 475-490.