Menstrual hygiene and sanitation practices among adolescent school going girls: a study from a South Indian town

Syed Hasan Nawaz Zaidi, A. Sivakami, D. Jegadeesh Ramasamy


Background: Hygiene practices of women during menstruation are of importance as it has health impacts in terms of increased vulnerability to reproductive tract infection. Proper menstrual hygiene, correct perception and belief protect women folk from this suffering. This study is aimed to explore the knowledge, attitude, social practices during menstruation among adolescent secondary schoolgirls.

Methods: This descriptive cross sectional study was undertaken among 150 adolescent school going girls by using provisional sampling in Thiruporur, India. Required data was collected through a pre-tested questionnaire during the study period and simple frequencies and comparative percentages were used to analyze the results.

Results: Only 18.67% of adolescent girls had knowledge about menstruation before menarche. As high as 67% of them did not know the cause of menstruation. 23.33% of the girls believed that menstrual bleed comes from the same pathway from which urine comes. Nearly all girls (96.67%) reported sanitary pad usage during the duration of mensuration. Two-third (66%) of the girls were secluded during menstruation and majority (81.3%) were restricted to attend school.

Conclusions: Though knowledge among the participant girls regarding mensuration and menstrual hygiene was not adequate, it was satisfactory to find that the sanitary pad usage among the sample was 100% due to government services which are provided free of cost. Definitely, it will improve the menstrual status of the girls from cloth to a safer sanitary absorbent usage.


Menstrual hygiene, Adolescent girls, Menstruation, Sanitary pad, Reproductive tract infection

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