Menstrual Practices Of Rural School Going Adolescent Girls In Varanasi District Of Uttar Pradesh, India

Research Article
Shipra Nagar., Anshu and Anjali Mathur
Adolescent girls, menstruation, health, hygiene, reproductive health

Background: Poor knowledge related to menstruation and presence of restrictions during menstruation is a common phenomenon. Objectives: (1) To study the menstrual practices of rural adolescent school going girls. (2) To examine the association of socio-demographic factors with the menstrual practices of respondents. Study design: An exploratory study with a cross-sectional approach. Settings and participants: 240 adolescent girls of age 12 to 18 years from government higher secondary schools of Varanasi district. Statistical analysis: Percentages and chi square test Results: Mean age at menarche was found to be 13.27 years. Majority of the girls had regular periods of normal duration. Problems like pain in lower abdomen, weakness, backache, lack of concentration and sadness was reported by girls during menstrual periods. The usage of home-made cloth pads was found to be common while most of them reused it. Religious restrictions and segregation during periods were the main practices followed by the families of the respondents. Knowledge of menarche prior to its onset was found to be significantly associated with education, age, family type and mother’s education of respondents. Hygiene maintained during periods seemed to be associated with variables such as caste, education, and age. Conclusions: Comprehensive reproductive health education needs to be emphasized to adolescent girls to ensure a healthy reproductive life for them.