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Keywords:

  • alternative therapy;
  • neonatal care;
  • nursing

Aims and objectives

To detect traditional methods applied for the treatment of newborn jaundice by mothers in Turkey.

Background

Traditional methods are generally used in our society. Instead of using medical services, people often use already-known traditional methods to treat the disease. In such cases, the prognosis of the disease generally becomes worse, the treatment period longer and healthcare costs higher, and more medicine is used.

Design

A cross-sectional descriptive study.

Methods

The participants of this study were 229 mothers with newborn babies aged 0–28 days in one university hospital and one public children's hospital in Sanliurfa. The study was conducted between March and May 2012. In this research, the Beliefs and Traditional Methods of Mothers for Jaundice Questionnaire, which was formed by searching the relevant literature, is used as a data collection tool. The data are evaluated by percentage distributions.

Results

Mothers apply conventional practices in cases of health problems such as jaundice, and application of these methods is important to mothers. Moreover, mothers reported applying hazardous conventional methods in cases of neonatal jaundice, such as cutting the area between the baby's eyebrows with a blade, cutting the back of the ear and the body and burning the body, which are not applied in different cultures.

Conclusions

Education regarding the effects of conventional methods being applied in families should be provided, and the results of this study should serve to guide further studies in assessing the effects of such education.

Relevance to clinical practice

This approach can support beneficial practices involving individual care and prevent the negative health effects of hazardous practices.