The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

A comparison of practices during the confinement period among Chinese, Malay, and Indian mothers in Singapore

A comparison of practices during the confinement period among Chinese, Malay, and Indian mothers in Singapore
A comparison of practices during the confinement period among Chinese, Malay, and Indian mothers in Singapore
BACKGROUND: Confinement (restrictions placed on diet and practices during the month right after delivery) represents a key feature of Asian populations. Few studies, however, have focused specifically on ethnic differences in confinement practices. This study assesses the confinement practices of three ethnic groups in a multi-ethnic Asian population.

METHODS: Participants were part of a prospective birth cohort study that recruited 1,247 pregnant women (57.2% Chinese, 25.5% Malay, and 17.3% Indian) during their first trimester. The 1,220 participants were followed up 3 weeks postpartum at home when questionnaires were administered to ascertain the frequency of adherence to the following confinement practices: showering; confinement-specific meals; going out with or without the baby; choice of caregiver assistance; and the use of massage therapy.

RESULTS: Most participants reported that they followed confinement practices during the first 3 weeks postpartum (Chinese: 96.4%, Malay: 92.4%, Indian: 85.6%). Chinese and Indian mothers tended to eat more special confinement diets than Malay mothers (p < 0.001), and Chinese mothers showered less and were more likely to depend on confinement nannies during this period than mothers from the two other ethnic groups (p < 0.001 for all). Malay mothers tended to make greater use of massage therapy (p < 0.001), whilst Indian mothers tended to have their mothers or mothers-in-law as assistant caregivers (p < 0.001).

CONCLUSION: Most Singapore mothers follow confinement practices, but the three Asian ethnic groups differed in specific confinement practices. Future studies should examine whether ethnic differences persist in later childrearing practices.
asian population, birth-cohort, confinement practices, postpartum
0730-7659
1-8
Fok, D.
97dd20a0-c82a-482e-9fcf-75c8be4a9db7
Aris, I.M.
ee15a46e-ead3-4b4a-a208-d39038a85480
Ho, J.
5578af0b-ee32-4cfc-90e5-d10be76c9c61
Lim, S.B.
f556ede0-1407-45dd-a45c-6b6df6d921cf
Chua, M.C.
3882f973-94c3-478b-bb32-095b1adeb47f
Pang, W.W.
ea58c80d-6316-4143-ad93-113b3b0c2072
Saw, S.M.
0684517e-f27e-49f0-98c3-7630e8fd1bbd
Kwek, K.
1a9b6c6e-a5e9-40a2-9bfe-44c2cea62a98
Godfrey, K.M.
0931701e-fe2c-44b5-8f0d-ec5c7477a6fd
Kramer, M.S.
89f86ceb-c49e-4402-a1e3-d79c406c178d
Chong, Y.S.
b50c99c9-4d83-46c5-a1c7-23f9a553ab8a
on behalf of the GUSTO Study Group, [Unknown]
34b4c1f2-223b-4ab8-a599-fa18d2695360
Fok, D.
97dd20a0-c82a-482e-9fcf-75c8be4a9db7
Aris, I.M.
ee15a46e-ead3-4b4a-a208-d39038a85480
Ho, J.
5578af0b-ee32-4cfc-90e5-d10be76c9c61
Lim, S.B.
f556ede0-1407-45dd-a45c-6b6df6d921cf
Chua, M.C.
3882f973-94c3-478b-bb32-095b1adeb47f
Pang, W.W.
ea58c80d-6316-4143-ad93-113b3b0c2072
Saw, S.M.
0684517e-f27e-49f0-98c3-7630e8fd1bbd
Kwek, K.
1a9b6c6e-a5e9-40a2-9bfe-44c2cea62a98
Godfrey, K.M.
0931701e-fe2c-44b5-8f0d-ec5c7477a6fd
Kramer, M.S.
89f86ceb-c49e-4402-a1e3-d79c406c178d
Chong, Y.S.
b50c99c9-4d83-46c5-a1c7-23f9a553ab8a
on behalf of the GUSTO Study Group, [Unknown]
34b4c1f2-223b-4ab8-a599-fa18d2695360

Fok, D., Aris, I.M., Ho, J., Lim, S.B., Chua, M.C., Pang, W.W., Saw, S.M., Kwek, K., Godfrey, K.M., Kramer, M.S., Chong, Y.S. and on behalf of the GUSTO Study Group, [Unknown] (2016) A comparison of practices during the confinement period among Chinese, Malay, and Indian mothers in Singapore. Birth, 1-8. (doi:10.1111/birt.12233). (PMID:27018256)

Record type: Article

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Confinement (restrictions placed on diet and practices during the month right after delivery) represents a key feature of Asian populations. Few studies, however, have focused specifically on ethnic differences in confinement practices. This study assesses the confinement practices of three ethnic groups in a multi-ethnic Asian population.

METHODS: Participants were part of a prospective birth cohort study that recruited 1,247 pregnant women (57.2% Chinese, 25.5% Malay, and 17.3% Indian) during their first trimester. The 1,220 participants were followed up 3 weeks postpartum at home when questionnaires were administered to ascertain the frequency of adherence to the following confinement practices: showering; confinement-specific meals; going out with or without the baby; choice of caregiver assistance; and the use of massage therapy.

RESULTS: Most participants reported that they followed confinement practices during the first 3 weeks postpartum (Chinese: 96.4%, Malay: 92.4%, Indian: 85.6%). Chinese and Indian mothers tended to eat more special confinement diets than Malay mothers (p < 0.001), and Chinese mothers showered less and were more likely to depend on confinement nannies during this period than mothers from the two other ethnic groups (p < 0.001 for all). Malay mothers tended to make greater use of massage therapy (p < 0.001), whilst Indian mothers tended to have their mothers or mothers-in-law as assistant caregivers (p < 0.001).

CONCLUSION: Most Singapore mothers follow confinement practices, but the three Asian ethnic groups differed in specific confinement practices. Future studies should examine whether ethnic differences persist in later childrearing practices.

Text
Birth-15-08-12.R2.5 (2).docx - Accepted Manuscript
Download (153kB)

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 22 February 2016
e-pub ahead of print date: 27 March 2016
Keywords: asian population, birth-cohort, confinement practices, postpartum
Organisations: Faculty of Medicine

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 390485
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/390485
ISSN: 0730-7659
PURE UUID: 26fd5fbd-2c7e-4b86-b243-deff5bebd476
ORCID for K.M. Godfrey: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-4643-0618

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 04 Apr 2016 10:25
Last modified: 07 Oct 2020 06:48

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: D. Fok
Author: I.M. Aris
Author: J. Ho
Author: S.B. Lim
Author: M.C. Chua
Author: W.W. Pang
Author: S.M. Saw
Author: K. Kwek
Author: K.M. Godfrey ORCID iD
Author: M.S. Kramer
Author: Y.S. Chong
Author: [Unknown] on behalf of the GUSTO Study Group

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×