Midwives' time and presence: A key factor in facilitating breastfeeding support for new mothers

Journal article


Gleeson, Danielle, Flowers, Karen and Fenwick, Jennifer. (2014) Midwives' time and presence: A key factor in facilitating breastfeeding support for new mothers. International Journal of Childbirth. 4(4), pp. 219 - 227. https://doi.org/10.1891/2156-5287.4.4.219
AuthorsGleeson, Danielle, Flowers, Karen and Fenwick, Jennifer
Abstract

BACKGROUND: There is now a plethora of work that has examined new mothers’ experiences of receiving breastfeeding support. However, there remains limited literature describing women’s experiences of receiving this support from midwives in the early postnatal period.

AIM: The study aimed to explore and describe women’s experiences of receiving breastfeeding support from midwives in the early postnatal period.

METHOD: A qualitative descriptive approach was used. Six first-time mothers who initiated breastfeeding after birth consented to be involved and participated in an in-depth interview. The techniques associated with dimensional analysis and constant comparison were used to analyze the data set.

FINDINGS: Two categories were identified that described women’s experiences of midwifery breastfeeding support. These were related to the midwives’ ability to spend and give the gift of time to women. Alternatively, the midwife’s busyness and inability to be present for the woman was considered a barrier to receiving positive breastfeeding support and the woman’s ability to problem solve any breastfeeding issues.

CONCLUSION: The findings of this study confirm both the importance of midwives spending time providing breastfeeding support and the negative consequences of a lack of time given for the provision of this support. Mothers have asked for midwives to be present; investing time in them, listening to them, and helping them solve problems. Current care models present barriers contributing to both the perceptions and realities of midwives’ lack of time, presenting a need to reconsider the design of maternity care environments and to adopt a caseload approach where women receive relationship-based care.

Year2014
JournalInternational Journal of Childbirth
Journal citation4 (4), pp. 219 - 227
PublisherSpringer Publishing Company
ISSN2156-5287
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1891/2156-5287.4.4.219
Web address (URL)https://search.proquest.com/docview/1634001464?accountid=8194
Page range219 - 227
Place of publicationUnited States of America
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https://acuresearchbank.acu.edu.au/item/87v8y/midwives-time-and-presence-a-key-factor-in-facilitating-breastfeeding-support-for-new-mothers

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