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Delivery and postpartum practices among new mothers in Laputta, Myanmar: intersecting traditional and modern practices and beliefs

Delivery and postpartum practices among new mothers in Laputta, Myanmar: intersecting traditional and modern practices and beliefs

Culture Health and Sexuality 18(9): 1054-1066

Myanmar is witnessing increased access to modern maternity care, along with shifting norms and practices. Past research has documented low rates of facility-based deliveries in the country, along with adverse maternal and child health outcomes. Research has also documented diverse traditional practices in the postpartum period, related to maternity care and maternal food intake. Through 34 qualitative interviews with women who recently gave birth and their mothers-in-law in one township in Myanmar (Laputta), we explore factors influencing decision-making around postpartum care and the practices that women engage in. We find that women use both modern and traditional providers because different types of providers play particular roles in the delivery and postpartum period. Despite knowledge of about healthy foods to eat postpartum, many women restrict the intake of certain foods, and mothers-in-laws' beliefs in these practices are particularly strong. Findings suggest that women and their families are balancing two different sets of practices and beliefs, which at times come in conflict. Educational campaigns and programmes should address both modern and traditional beliefs and practices to help women be better able to access safe care and improve their own and their children's health.

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Accession: 057571814

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 27212423

DOI: 10.1080/13691058.2016.1144792

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