Behaviour of Urban Indian Adolescent Girls During Menstruation

AMJ
Australasian Medical Journal
2011

Manish Kumar Goel, Kundan Mittal

Abstract

Background
Adolescence in females signifies the transition from girlhood to womanhood and is marked with the onset of menarche. Indian society is interwoven into a set of traditions, myths and misconceptions, especially regarding menstruation and related issues. The present study was conducted to assess knowledge and psycho-social behavior related to menstruation among adolescent girls in urban Haryana (state), India.

Method
A total of 478 adolescent girls in the age group of 15 -19 years from three educational institutes of Rohtak city were selected randomly. It was a community-based, descriptive, cross-sectional questionnaire based study, and a pre-tested, pre-coded, closed ended questionnaire was used.

Results
Feeling of sickness was the most common (in more than two-third of subjects) followed by irritability and emotional disturbances. More than 3/4th of the subjects did not worship during menstruation, 45% were not allowed in kitchen and nearly one-fourth followed dietary restrictions. More than 16% subjects thought menstruation to be a sign of onset of a disease and little more than 7 % thought it to be a curse. Girls preferred to discuss their menstruation related problems either with their mothers or with their friends.

Conclusion
Girls have inaccurate and partial information regarding menstruation. There is a need of early intervention in the area of adolescent psycho-social behavior during menstruation.

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Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.