Effect of early versus immediate breastfeeding on the behavior of term newborns: A randomized controlled trial

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Author: 
Fadous Khalife, M.C., Samarani, M., Abi Fares, G., Makhoul, G., Matta, P., Hadchity, E., Amm, M., Saaybi, J., Fneiche, A., Kerillos, J., Kosseifi, R., Matta, A. and AlOjaimi, M.
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Objective: Breastfeeding is the optimal nutrition of the newborn. Its nutritional, developmental and protective benefits have been widely published. Yet, the effect of immediate breastfeeding at birth on newborn behavior is barely studied. We assessed the effect of skin-to-skin breast-feeding immediately following birth versus early breastfeeding at one hour of birth on the behavior of the newborn at term. Method: Randomized clinical trial of 82 full-term newborns born via normal vaginal delivery and no risk factors. Two groups were allocated to immediate breastfeeding with skin-to-skin contact for 1 hour in the delivery room (n = 44) or early breastfeeding (n = 38) at one hour after birth. The Neonatal Behavioral Assessment Scale (Brazelton) was used to assess the interaction of each newborn with his / her environment and cognitive development. Infants were screened around twelve to 24 hours of life. Results: In both groups, the Brazelt on score variables were tested using the Independent T-Test. The newborns with immediate breast feeding and skin-to-skin contact scored higher than the group with early breastfeeding at 1 hour of life on the elements of habituation, motor control, state organization and state regulation of the Brazelt on score (P<0.001 on all items or overall). Conclusion: Our data provides definitive evidence that immediate breastfeeding is beneficial for newborn behavior. Breast-fed infants immediately after birth with skin-to-skin contact were more alert, calm and reactive than in fants breastfed one hour after birth.

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