Draft Research Paper Submitted to Journal “Social Science Spectrum” Menstrual Hygiene Management among Young Unmarried Women in India Author: Enu Anand1, Dr. Sayeed Unisa1, Jayakant Singh2
1. International Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai India 2. Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India
Abstract: Menstruation among women is an integral part and a natural process that starts with menarche and stops at menopause. Women use sanitary pad, clothes and other methods to prevent blood stain from becoming evident. This paper examines the prevalence and discrepancies in use of hygienic method during menstruation among unmarried women in India using nationally representative District Level Household and facility Survey data (2007-08). The findings suggest that only one-third of the study population used hygienic method during menstruation. Rural-urban and poor-non poor disparity persists across all background characteristics in use of hygienic method. Women with high school and above education (OR=8.8, p and taboos imposed on women during the time of menstruation. Women are not allowed to enter in the kitchen, touch anybody or anything even they are not permitted to enter in the temple during menstruation. (Kumar & Srivastava, 2011; Puri & Kapoor, 2006; Shah et al., 2013; Thakur et al., 2014). Although now a days, the situation has been changing among educated and urban resident women, most parts of the rural India upholds such practices. Not only the socio-cultural norms imposes women to adhere such practices, often the women themselves have been silent and feel ashamed about discussing menstrual hygiene management. The women themselves feel reluctant to enter into the temple considering themselves as impure (Kumar & Srivastava, 2011). Menstrual hygiene management is a neglected issue in India and in other developing nations. Many girls drop out from school due to limited access and inability to purchase sanitary napkins, lack of toilets and water facility in the school premises (Garg et al., 2012). Most of them are forced to leave studies once they start menstruating. As per Census 2011, women in the age group 15-24 constitute more than 9 percent of total population of India. The total number of women in this age group is more than 110 million that equals to five times of the population of Australian continent alone, yet the monthly menstrual need of such a massive population have been grossly neglected. The national health programme of India has failed to adequately showcase the need of menstrual hygiene management as an important area of concern. There is a lack of evidence to bring forth the issue of unhygienic method and its ill effect...
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