Journal of Basic and Clinical Reproductive Sciences

Journal of Basic and Clinical Reproductive Sciences
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A Community Based Study on Menstrual Hygiene among Reproductive Age Group Women in a Rural Area, Tamil Nadu

Author(s): S Sangeetha Balamurugan, SS Shilpa, Sheethal Shaji

Background: Women suffer due to their ignorance on hygienic requirement during menstruation. Hygiene‑related practices of women during menstruation are of considerable importance, as it has a health impact in terms of increased vulnerability to reproductive tract infections (RTI). Aims: This study aims to assess the hygienic practices during menstruation and influence of socio-demographic factors on menstrual hygienic practices among women of reproductive age-group. Subjects and Methods: It is a cross‑sectional community‑based study conducted among 200 women of reproductive age group (15-45 years) in a rural field practice area, VMKV Medical college, Salem in Oct–Dec 2013 by using simple random sampling technique. Using structured pretested questionnaire, women were interviewed regarding their sociodemographic history and menstrual hygiene practices. Result: Majority of study population, 36% (72/200) belonged to the 21-30 year age group. About 75% (150/200) were married. Majority of women were unskilled workers 35% (70/200), had primary education 43.3% (86/200), and 54.3% (108/200) belonged to lower middle class. The mean age of menarche among the reproductive age‑group women was 13.15 years. Majority of women 51.8% (104/200) used cloth during menstruation; about 45.7% (91/200) used the same cloth by washing and reusing every month. There was a significant influence of sociodemographic factors and hygienic practices during menstruation (P < 0.001). Conclusion: Most women were found to follow unhygienic practices. Hence, efforts such as improving female literacy and health education regarding the various risk factors should be made by the policy makers to increase menstrual hygiene among rural population.

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