Because hospitals are discharging postpartum women within 48 hours of delivery, little time is available for maternal baby care instruction. Therefore it is important that any teaching, whether in the hospital or in an outpatient setting, concentrate on topics that provide the greatest benefit to the mother and child. This study provides an initial view of maternal knowledge of well baby care in an attempt to discern topics of common misinformation and misunderstanding. Fifty primiparous, English-speaking mothers were interviewed. The interview consisted of questions dealing with social support for the mother; employment or schooling; source of prior child care knowledge; and knowledge of feeding, diapering, sleeping, calming, bathing, and sickness of newborn infants. The data gathered indicate that although most women report one or more sources of knowledge, several gaps exist in their preparedness. The traditional information presented may overemphasize known areas at the expense of some that have significant consequences for health and safety. Many hospitals offer postpartum classes in bathing. These data indicate that if these programs could be expanded to include more practical information, they would provide a beneficial learning experience at a critical time in a new mother's life.
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||Journal of Perinatology|
|State||Published - Mar 1996|