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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557On-line version ISSN 1678-4782


RAMOS, Carmen V.  and  ALMEIDA, João A.G.. Maternal allegations for weaning: qualitative study. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2003, vol.79, n.5, pp.385-390. ISSN 0021-7557.

OBJECTIVE: To study the reasons for weaning given by women receiving care at a Baby-Friendly Maternity in Teresina, state of Piauí, Brazil. METHODS: The methodological principles of qualitative research were applied, supported by the social representation theory. Data were collected from 24 women who were in the process of weaning their babies before the 4th month of life. RESULTS: The decision-making process that leads women to wean their babies is complex and guilt-ridden. The following reasons for weaning were mentioned: having weak or little milk; puerperal problems affecting the breasts; lack of experience; disparity between the needs of the mother and the needs of the baby; external factors; work; ambiguity between wish/capacity to breastfeed and between burden/desire. CONCLUSIONS: A sense of solitude/isolation on the part of the mother and the need for support, not only from health services, but also from other segments of society, were conveyed in all interviews. The model of health care providing should be amended so as to treat breastfeeding as an act to be learned by women and protected by society.

Keywords : Breastfeeding; weaning; woman; social-biological relationship.

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