Culture and Childrearing Practices
Breastfeeding as a part of the childrearing practices is an essential element for the growth and development of the infant. Such is the case given the advantages that it affords the child. For instance, the breastfeeding child can get the necessary nutrients for his/her growth. Also, baby bonding with his/her mother, family planning and parent’s love to the child are inevitable with good breastfeeding practices (“Breastfeeding”, 2015).
The attainment of the said benefits is dependent on the culture of an individual. Different cultural groups ascribe to various breastfeeding practices that are not equally leading to the achievement of these advantages. For instance, in my case, breastfeeding is an important activity that needs to take place exclusively to six months after birth even with the reduction of the breast milk. However, this views very differently from that of a person coming from the Lebanese culture. In this cultural group, insufficient breast milk is reason enough for a mother to abandon breastfeeding the baby to consider other options such as formula milk (Osman, El Zein, & Wick, 2009). Utilization of such alternatives, however, is not beneficial as breastfeeding and thus not recommended.
Lastly, given the existence different cultural preferences on breastfeeding, a nurse must make considerations when taking care of mothers to attain a cultural-sensitive care. An important consideration that an individual must ensure is he/she understands the cultural breastfeeding practice of the mother and work towards its reinforcement if it epitomizes good practice. Another essential element for incorporation in the plan of care is the provision of information in an unbiased way enhance the client making informed decisions in a cultural friendly environment (“Breastfeeding”, 2015). With such considerations, the nurse is on course to influence mothers in maintaining good breastfeeding practices.
In conclusion, indeed an understanding of the various cultural breastfeeding practices is of the essence. That is the case given that different cultures incline to various breastfeeding practices and as such failure to recognize their distinctness in the plan of care is unforgivable to them. As such, nurses need to be culturally sensitive when caring for individuals with different cultural background. However, failure to do so is a sure way of acting opposite to the nursing principle of fairness, which demands equity and equality for all regardless of the culture and all other aspects.
Breastfeeding. (2015). Journal Of Obstetric, Gynecologic & Neonatal Nursing, 44(1), 145-150. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1552-6909.12530
Osman, H., El Zein, L., & Wick, L. (2009). Cultural beliefs that may discourage breastfeeding among Lebanese women: a qualitative analysis. International breastfeeding journal, 4(1), 1.