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J Dev Behav Pediatr. 2009 Oct;30(5):420-5.

Bed sharing among mother-infant pairs in Klang district, Peninsular Malaysia and its relationship to breast-feeding.

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Department of Community Medicine, International Medical University, Bukit Jalil, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.



The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of mother-infant bed sharing in Klang district, Peninsular Malaysia and to identify factors associated with bed sharing.


This was a cross-sectional study involving 682 mother-infant pairs with infants up to 6 months attending government clinics in Klang district, Peninsular Malaysia. Data were collected by face-to-face interview using a pretested structured questionnaire for a 4-month period in 2006. Data regarding maternal, paternal, obstetric, infant, occupancy, breast-feeding characteristics, and bed-sharing practice were collected. Data on bed sharing were based on practice in the past 1-month period. Bed sharing was defined as an infant sharing a bed with mother, and infant must be within arms reach from the mother, whereas a bed was defined as either a sleeping mattress placed on a bed frame or placed on the floor. The prevalence of bed sharing was estimated. Relationship and magnitude of association between independent factors and bed sharing were examined using odds ratio and 95% confidence interval. Logistic regression analysis was used to control for confounding factors.


The prevalence of bed sharing among mothers with infants aged between 1 and 6 months was 73.5% (95% confidence interval: 70.0-76.7). In multivariate analysis, urban/rural differences, mothers' ethnicity, occupation, family income, husbands' support on bed sharing, number of children younger than 12 years staying in the house, and breast-feeding were associated with bed sharing.


These factors need to be considered in analyzing the overall risks and benefits of bed sharing, paying attention to breastfeeding practices.

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