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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 25  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 563-568

Neck Muscles' Responses to Cradle, Cross-cradle and Football Breastfeeding Hold Positions in Nursing Mothers: A Preliminary Study

1 Department of Medical Rehabilitation, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, Nigeria
2 Department of Anatomy, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, Nigeria
3 Department of Nursing Sciences, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, Nigeria
4 Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
5 Department of Physiotherapy, Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
6 Department of Medical Physiology in College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. I T Ikele
Department of Anatomy, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/njcp.njcp_630_20

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Background: Breastfeeding-related Neck Pain (BFNP) is prevalent in nursing mothers and cuts across the utilization of different breastfeeding (BF) hold positions. Biomechanical considerations to highlight ergonomically safe BF positions for the prevention of BFNP have not been previously studied. Aim: This study was designed to compare the electrical activities of selected neck muscles across three breastfeeding hold positions [cradle (C1), cross-cradle (C2), and football (FB)]. Materials and Method: Surface electromyographic analyses of four neck muscles (right and left components of each trapezius and sternocleidomastoid) were performed respectively during three BF trials with different BF hold positions (C1, C2, and FB) in 22 nursing mothers. For all the trials, the mothers nursed from the left breast. Results: Across the three BF trials, the electrical activities of each of the neck muscles did not vary significantly (P > 0.05). Furthermore, the left muscular components showed predominantly higher activities, as compared to their right components. Conclusion: The breastfeeding hold position adopted during BF tasks may not be a determinant of BFNP in nursing mothers. Further studies to ascertain the biomechanical implications of the utilized BF holds are recommended.

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