Published online by Cambridge University Press: 31 July 2008
The paper examines the pattern of breast-feeding among women still in their prime childbearing ages (15–35 years) in Ilorin, the capital city of Kwara state in Nigeria. While breast-feeding is still a common practice among urban women, there is wide variation in the duration of breast-feeding depending on the socioeconomic characteristics of the mothers. Mother's education and father's education have very strong negative associations with duration of breast-feeding. Use of contraception also has a significant independent but negative effect on breast-feeding duration. Christians continue breast-feeding for shorter periods than Muslims. The introduction of supplementary feeding to the infant occurs in this population much earlier than is recommended by various authorities. The dangers inherent in this pattern of infant feeding are discussed.