Feeding of infants and young children in tsunami affected villages in Pondicherry

Indian Pediatr. 2006 Aug;43(8):724-7.


The study was conducted to identify the problems related to feeding of children post tsunami in four villages in Pondicherry. Data were collected from 100 randomly chosen families who had an infant or a young child below 3 years of age during Tsunami. Informants were the mothers. In the population studied, 30% mothers did not exclusively breast feed for 6 months; 58% bottle fed their children and 51% fed their infants with commercial formula. The occurrence of diarrhea was three times higher among children who were fed with free breast milk substitutes (BMS) than in those who were not fed with the same. Those populations, wherein a pre-existing tradition of artificial feeding is present, infants are at further risk during a crisis situation like Tsunami. Breast feeding practices need strengthening even in routine conditions to tackle a disaster rather than intervention after the disaster.

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Altruism
  • Breast Feeding / statistics & numerical data*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diarrhea / epidemiology*
  • Disasters*
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • India / epidemiology
  • Infant
  • Infant Formula / statistics & numerical data*
  • Infant Nutritional Physiological Phenomena*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Risk Assessment
  • Rural Population*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Time Factors