Health and wellbeing of adolescent girls in a hilly district of Himachal Pradesh: a cross sectional study using low cost interventions

Nidhi Jindal, Nipun Jindal, Ajay Badrel


Background: Adolescence is a phase when major physical, psychological, emotional and psychosocial changes take place and it is imperative to meet the unmet needs of this age group especially the girls for optimizing their future contribution during adulthood. The objective of this study was to assess the indicators of the well being and health of school going adolescent girls in District Shimla of Himachal Pradesh and evaluating the effectiveness of a local developed questionnaire for assessment.

Methods: A symptomatology based questionnaire was employed for screening the adolescent girls for anaemia, calcium and vitamin D deficiency, worm infestation, menstrual problems, reproductive tract problems and BMI was used for their overall nourishment status. The questionnaire was administered by trained health care workers.

Results: The prevalence of anaemia came out to be 21.54% while 12.37% and 7.51% girls had signs of calcium deficiency and worm infestation respectively. 9.38% girls had menstrual problems while 1.9% had sexual health problems. 15.32% girls came out to be malnourished in the survey.

Conclusions: Appropriate interventions need to be formulated properly taking into consideration the problem statements and executed well for improvement of health concerns of adolescent girls. If the resources are constrained, low cost interventions can be deployed locally in the communities depending upon the problems encountered to achieve optimum results.


Adolescent girls, Adolescent health, Anaemia, Low cost interventions, Menstrual health

Full Text:



Rao R, Lena A, Nair NS, Kamath V, Kamath A. Effectiveness of Reproductive Health Education among Rural Adolescence Girls : A School based Intervention Study in Udupi Talek, Karnataka. Indian J med Sci. 2008;62:439-43.

Bharthalakshmi J, Govindarajan PK, Ethirajan N, Felix AJW. Knowledge & Practice of Menstrual Hygiene among School going Adolescent Girls. National J Res Comm Med. 2014;3(2):138-42.

Chaturvedi S, Kapil U, Gnanasekaran N, Sachdev HPS, Pandey RM, Bhanti T. Nutrient intake amongst Girls belonging to Poor Socio-economic group of Rural Area of Rajasthan. Indian Pediatr. 1996;33:197-202.

Vasanthi G, Prasher AB, H Susie, T Sujatha, Raman L. Iron Nutritional Status of Adolescent Girls from Rural area & Urban Slums. Indian Pediatr. 1994;31:127-32.

NFHS-4 Report, Government of India 2015-16.

Trivedi SS. Health Concern among Adolescent Girl. JIMSA. 2012;25(2):67.

Sebanti G, Dutta R, Sengupta S. A Profile of Adolescent Girls with Gynecological Problem. J Obstet Gynecol India. 2005;55(4):353-5.

Dussault G, Dubois CA. Human resources for health policies: a critical component in health policies. Human Resources for Health. 2003;1:1-16.

Rural Health Statistics 2018-19, Government of India. Available at: default/files/Final%20RHS%202018-19_0.pdf. Accessed on 15 May 2020.

Basu S, Hazarika R, Parmar V. Prevalence of Anemia among the School going Adolescents of Chandigarh. Indian Paediatr. 2005;42:593-8.

Rajaratnam J, Abel R, Asokan JS, Jonathan P. Prevalence of anaemia among the adolescent girls of rural Tamil Nadu. Indian Paediatr. 2000;37:532-6.

Singh J, Singh JV, Srivastava AK, Suryakant. Health status of the adolescent girls in the slums of Lucknow. Indian J Community Med. 2006;31:102-3.

Deshpande N, Karva D, Agarkhedkar S, Deshpande S. Prevalence of anemia in adolescent girls and its co-relation with demographic factors. Int J Med Public Heal. 2013;3:235-9.

Siva PM, Sobha A, Manjula VD. Prevalence of Anaemia and Its Associated Risk Factors Among Adolescent Girls of Central Kerala. J Clin Diagn Res. 2016;10(11).

Gupta A, Parashar A, Sharma D, Thakur A. Anemia among adolescent girls in Shimla hills of north India: Does BMI and onset of menarche have a role? Indian J Med Sci. 2012;66(5):126.

Bashar A, Aggarwal AK, Pilania M. A Study to Assess Pattern of Morbidities among Adolescents under School Health Program from a rural Block of North India. National J Community Med. 2017;8(12):721-5.

Global Burden of Disease Pediatrics Collaboration. Global and National Burden of Diseases and Injuries among children and adolescents between 1990 and 2013: Findings from the Global Burden of Disease 2013 Study. JAMA Pediatr. 2016;170:267-87.