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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 413-417

A comparative study on menstrual hygiene among urban and rural adolescent girls of West Bengal

Department of Community Medicine, Calcutta National Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Baishakhi Paria
Department of Community Medicine, Calcutta National Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2249-4863.148131

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Background: Menstruation is a normal physiological process to the females but sometimes it is considered as unclean phenomenon in the society. Objectives: To compare the perceptions of different aspects of menstrual hygiene between adolescent girls of rural and urban area. Materials and Methods: A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted from April 2013 to September 2013 in urban and rural area of South 24, Paraganas, West Bengal among 541 adolescent school girls in the age group of 13-18 years. Data were collected by the predesigned and pretested questionnaires. Result: Only 37.52% girls were aware of menstruation prior to attainment of menarche. The difference in the awareness regarding menstruation in urban and rural area was highly significant. Only 36% girls in the urban and 54.88% girls in the rural area used homemade sanitary pads and reused the same in the subsequent period. Satisfactory Cleaning of external genitalia was practiced by only 47.63% of the urban and 37.96% of the rural girls. This study found differences in hygienic practices followed by adolescent girls in urban and rural area. Conclusion: Hygienic practices during menstruation were unsatisfactory in the rural area as compared to the urban area. Girls should be educated about the proper hygienic practices as well as bring them out of traditional beliefs, misconceptions, and restrictions regarding menstruation.

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