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Feeding, caregiving practices, and developmental delay among children under five in lowland Nepal: a community-based cross-sectional survey

Dulal, Sophiya; Prost, Audrey; Karki, Surendra; Merom, Dafna; Shrestha, Bhim Prasad; Bhandari, Bishnu; Manandhar, Dharma S; ... Saville, Naomi M; + view all (2022) Feeding, caregiving practices, and developmental delay among children under five in lowland Nepal: a community-based cross-sectional survey. BMC Public Health , 22 (1) , Article 1721. 10.1186/s12889-022-13776-8. Green open access

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Abstract

Background: Nurturing care, including adequate nutrition, responsive caregiving and early learning, is critical to early childhood development. In Nepal, national surveys highlight inequity in feeding and caregiving practices for young children. Our objective was to describe infant and young child feeding (IYCF) and cognitive and socio-emotional caregiving practices among caregivers of children under five in Dhanusha district, Nepal, and to explore socio-demographic and economic factors associated with these practices. Methods: We did a cross-sectional analysis of a subset of data from the MIRA Dhanusha cluster randomised controlled trial, including mother-child dyads (N = 1360), sampled when children were median age 46 days and a follow-up survey of the same mother-child dyads (N = 1352) when children were median age 38 months. We used World Health Organization IYCF indicators and questions from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey-4 tool to obtain information on IYCF and cognitive and socio-emotional caregiving practices. Using multivariable logistic regression models, potential explanatory household, parental and child-level variables were tested to determine their independent associations with IYCF and caregiving indicators. Results: The prevalence of feeding indicators varied. IYCF indicators, including ever breastfed (99%), exclusive breastfeeding (24-hour recall) (89%), and vegetable/fruit consumption (69%) were common. Problem areas were early initiation of breastfeeding (16%), colostrum feeding (67%), no pre-lacteal feeding (53%), timely introduction of complementary feeding (56%), minimum dietary diversity (49%) and animal-source food consumption (23%). Amongst caregiving indicators, access to 3+ children’s books (7%), early stimulation and responsive caregiving (11%), and participation in early childhood education (27%) were of particular concern, while 64% had access to 2+ toys and 71% received adequate care. According to the Early Child Development Index score, only 38% of children were developmentally on track. Younger children from poor households, whose mothers were young, had not received antenatal visits and delivered at home were at higher risk of poor IYCF and caregiving practices. Conclusions: Suboptimal caregiving practices, inappropriate early breastfeeding practices, delayed introduction of complementary foods, inadequate dietary diversity and low animal-source food consumption are challenges in lowland Nepal. We call for urgent integrated nutrition and caregiving interventions, especially as interventions for child development are lacking in Nepal.

Type: Article
Title: Feeding, caregiving practices, and developmental delay among children under five in lowland Nepal: a community-based cross-sectional survey
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/s12889-022-13776-8
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-022-13776-8
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.
Keywords: Science & Technology, Life Sciences & Biomedicine, Public, Environmental & Occupational Health, Infant, Young children, Feeding, Caregiving, Early child development, Nepal, EARLY-CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT, SECONDARY DATA-ANALYSIS, YOUNG-CHILDREN, DEVELOPING-COUNTRIES, GLOBAL HEALTH, INCOME, DETERMINANTS, INTERVENTIONS, ENGAGEMENT, NUTRITION
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10157105
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