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Acute respiratory infections in children: a study of knowledge and practices of mothers in rural Haryana

Acute respiratory infections in children: a study of knowledge and practices of mothers in rural Haryana

Journal of Communicable Diseases 24(2): 75-77

Acute respiratory tract infections (ARI) are very common in India, with 30-60 million episodes of pneumonia and severe pneumonia occurring annually in under fives. They are important causes of child morbidity and mortality, accounting in India for 14.3% of infant mortality and 15.9% of mortality among 1-5 year olds. The majority of these deaths could, however, be prevented if mothers knew the signs and symptoms associated with infections so that timely referrals could be made. Mothers also need to provide supportive care to these children during illness. Data were collected on the knowledge and practices of mothers in two villages of Block Beri of district Rohtak for devising a standard management plan. 304 mothers were interviewed. 23% recognized pneumonia by fast breathing, 11.2% recognized severe pneumonia by chest indrawing, and 1.3% knew the infective origin of ARI. Most were convinced about the continuation of breast feeding, but 70% advised restricting food. The use of herbal tea in ARI was widely prevalent along with the practice of putting warm mustard oil in the ear for curing ear pain. The primary health center was the most frequented place for treating ARI and the mother-in-law was the most important person in making management decisions for the child.

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Accession: 039181171

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PMID: 1344174

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