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close this bookMaternal Diet, Breast-Feeding Capacity, and Lactational Infertility (UNU/WHO, 1983, 107 pages)
close this folder5. Family planning and its relation to nutritional well-being and to maternal and child health
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View the documentFamily planning in perspective
View the documentMaternal care
View the documentLactation and breast-feeding
View the documentFamily-planning technologies and side-effects on lactation
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Maternal care

5.7. It would be wrong to think of child development only in terms of its interaction with malnutrution, infection, and social status. The amount of time a mother can spend with her baby is also of paramount importance. Such attention is inevitably concentrated on the youngest baby and therefore the weaned child who is not quite old enough to help himself is likely to be ignored much more than is desirable: he does not get sufficient maternal stimulation to optimize his neurological development. In extreme circumstances he may also not get his fair share of the family food. Studies of this phenomenon have shown the problem to be at its worst when a mother has more than one child under five years at the time a new pregnancy commences.