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The role of the BVC nurse as support and counsellor in baby feeding and strengthening the parenting

Title

The role of the BVC nurse as support and counsellor in baby feeding and strengthening the parenting

Background

Providing balanced counselling in baby feeding and at the same time, strengthening parenting is a challenging task. Society’s norms influence attitudes toward breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is often equated with being a good mother. The relationship with the child can also be negatively affected by breastfeeding difficulties. Many studies show the importance of support from both the profession and close relatives for breastfeeding success. As far as we know, very few studies describing what parents want in the form of help and advice from the BVC nurse. In particular, the National Board of Health and Welfare calls for guidelines and recommendations to obtain a more coequal national child health care, and notes that there is no research in the area (Guidance for child health care, 2014).

Aim

Finding a concept for how BVC nurses can optimize their support for parents in issues of baby feeding and at the same time strengthen parenting where also the partner includes

Method

During their 6-month visit to some baby health care centres in the Stockholm area, parents have been asked to fill out a questionnaire about their experiences regarding support and advice in both parenting and issues about baby feeding in the meeting with the BVC nurse. In this survey, partners of women with perceived breastfeeding difficulties and who completed their breastfeeding earlier than they initially intended, have given their consent to participate in a follow-up interview focusing on partners’ experiences and role. Furthermore, BVC nurses will be interviewed to study the profession’s experiences of support in issues of parenting and baby feeding

Relevance

How the support is given and communicated can be crucial, both for breastfeeding success but also for how the mother can experience herself in the mother role. If breastfeeding was not as she initially thought, it is not uncommon for feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt

Foundation

S:t Eriks BVC: Akademiskt Primärvårdscentrum (APC), Mjölkdroppen

Contact

Responsible for the project: Sofia Zwedberg, Fil. Dr, Sophiahemmet Högskola and
Panos Papachristou Leg. doctor, med.Dr. Coordinator at S:t Erik’s Academic Care Center (AVC)