The present study was conducted to assess the breastfeeding practices in infants belonging to three social groups of Sialkot city. A total number of 210 mothers randomly selected were interviewed and data was collected with the help of a pre-tested question guide designed for the study. The results showed that breastfeeding practices in group I (lower socio-economic class) were maximum (62.86%) as compared to group II (middle class) 25.71% and group III (upper class) 15.71% mothers. Mothers belonging to group I preferred cow/buffalo milk (57.69%), whereas, group I and group III mothers used formula/tin milk to supplement breast-milk. Most of the mothers of group I started other milk along with breast milk a little later as compared to group II and group III mothers. Practices of discontinuing breast milk in infants before 12 months of age was more common (17.14%) among group III mothers as compared to 12.86% in group II and 7.14% in group I mothers. The most popular prelacteal feed was honey among all the three socio-economics groups. Herbal fluids were given to many infants with the presumption to organize the gastrointestinal tract functions and as a replacement feeding, due to the concept that milk does not come properly in early 2-3 days after delivery. Gripe water was the main confounder of breast milk among all the three socio-economic classes. Majority of the mothers in all the three-socio economic classes have given colostrums to their infants. Bottle-feeding was the predominant mode of feeding adopted by the mothers of all the three classes. Majority of the mothers initiated breastfeeding on third day of delivery. Relatives were the main source of information among all the three study groups. The
working women were facing problems in breast –feeding their children. Introduction of first solid food to the infants in-group I,II & III was at the age of 5.55, 5.15 and 5.06 months and kitchri, cerelac, mashed banana were the first food given to the child respectively.
It has been concluded that although the upper and middle class women were well aware of breastfeeding practices but they are not actually practicing it. They need appropriate support to promote and sustain breastfeeding.