Published: 2021-04-23

Knowledge, attitude and practice of menstrual hygiene among adolescent schoolgirls of rural area, Dakshina Kannada, India

Pramodha M. S., Shashirekha H. D.


Background: Adolescent girls constitute a vulnerable group not only with respect to their social status but also in relation to their health. Menstruation is accompanied by a cultural taboo in almost every society in the world. Although very common issue of everyday of life, menstruation is associated with many menstruations negative attitude in young girls. The young population is seen to be trapped and confused due to the different schools of thoughts at home and the outer world. This indicates an urgency to investigate girls, menstrual needs, to inform effective responses and educate them about the right strategies of menstrual hygiene, attitudes and practices. The aim of our study was to assess the knowledge, attitude and practices about menstrual hygiene among adolescent school girls from rural areas of Dakshina Kannada.

Methods: This was a cross sectional study conducted from January 2020 to February 2020 among 130 secondary schools and high school girls of rural area of Dakshina Kannada, using predesigned questionnaire after obtaining informed consent.

Results: In our study, most of the students had attained menarche by 12yrs of age. 86.15% were lacking primary knowledge about menstruation, and 80% of our participants had good knowledge about cleanliness of undergarments, and 65% of students knew that menstruation was a physiological phenomenon and 71% of the participants, still believed in the taboos and myths associated with menses and 30% were shy about carrying sanitary products to school. 63.85% participants still used cloth and most worrisome finding of our study is that 63% of our students did not feel comfortable to approach their family/elders/health care workers to solve their queries about menstruation.

Conclusions: The study aimed at assessing the knowledge, attitude & practices of the adolescents regarding menstruation and menstrual hygiene. The low level of knowledge among participants is evident from their unpreparedness while entering menarche and their strong views of menstruation as social taboo can be judged from their various restrictions, owing to such strong socio-cultural beliefs and practices. Group discussions, media campaigns, sex education in schools are required to overcome taboo associated with menstruation.



Knowledge, Menstrual hygiene, Adolescent schoolgirls

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