A study of menstrual hygiene and related personal hygiene practices among adolescent girls in rural Puducherry
Keywords:Adolescent girls, Menstrual Health and hygiene, Sanitary pads, Genito-urinary illness
Background: Adolescent population occupies 1/5th of world’s population and in India 20.9% of the population falls into this age group. Social prohibitions and traditional beliefs blocked the access to get the right kind of information to adolescent girls that led to poor hygiene practices. These practices results in harbouring of micro-organisms that increases susceptibility to genito-urinary infections. Hence this study was conducted to study the menstrual hygiene practices among adolescent girls and in rural Puducherry.
Objectives: To study the menstrual hygiene practices among adolescent girls in rural Puducherry.
Methodology: A community based descriptive cross sectional study was conducted in rural field practicing area of MGMCRI, Puducherry, from 15th of March 2013 to 31st April 2014 by using semi-structured questionnaire. 528 adolescent girls were included by complete enumeration.
Results: Majority (89.2%) of the adolescent girls was using sanitary pads, fresh and reusable cloths were used by 6.6% and 4.2%, respectively. 65.3% girls changed their soaked absorbent 2-5 times in a day. Majority (60.8%) of the girls disposed their used absorbent by burying or burning. 67.9% girls were washing genitalia during micturition. 54.4% used soap and water for hand cleaning purpose and 1.4% used ash & mud etc.
Conclusions: Even though sanitary pad users were high, unhygienic practices were noticed, so more emphasize is needed to be given on awareness of menstrual hygiene practices among adolescent girls.
Key words: Adolescent girls, menstrual health and hygiene, sanitary pads, genito-urinary illness.
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