Over 80% of Indian girls, not ready to welcome adulthood

Hyderabad: On the eve of the International Women’s Day 2020, the Doctors and medical team from Continental Hospitals on Saturday conducted awareness sessions for high school girls across four Government Schools. Telangana State Gurukul Social Welfare School, Zilla Parishad High Schools, Upper Primary School are among the institutions where awareness camps were organized.

Puberty marks a transition between childhood and adulthood. During adolescence, girls need support in regard to physical, emotional and social wellbeing.

What Girls Should Know?

* Use sanitary napkin or tampon or menstrual cup

* Change sanitary napkin frequently to prevent infections

* Wash genitals regularly with clean water and soap

* Emphasize on proper disposal, so that it is not hazardous

Attaining Menarche (menstruation) is more often a silent issue in girls’ life, especially in rural and low socio-economic groups. And according to few published studies and reports, over 80% among Indian girls are not ready to welcome adulthood due to myths and lack of awareness on puberty.

In India, even in 2020, talking about menstruation and sexual health openly is a taboo! It is this lack of awareness that puts the unprepared girls in a state of shock and confusion about themselves and makes them feel embarrassed in front of others. Due to the common practices in our conservative society, restrictions are implied on menstruating girls, and this further pushes these girls into a shell forcing them to lead an uninformed or ill-informed lifestyle.

Commenting on the problems faced by menstruating girls, Dr Kavitha Naragoni, Gynaecologist, Continental Hospitals said, “Due to poor economic conditions coupled with lack of proper awareness, more than half among Indian girls and women use and reuse cotton cloths during menstrual cycles.

Unhygienic cleaning of these cloths lead to major ailments among women like Reproductive Tract Infections (RTI), Pelvic Inflammatory Diseases (PID), Infertility, Bacterial Vaginosis with a higher risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes like preterm birth, Urinary Tract Infections, Cervical Cancer, and they are even susceptibility to Sexually Transmitted Infections.

Poor infrastructure in high schools too is a common factor that adds to the misery of these girls, who are on the verge of turning into young adults. Lack of proper toilets, and safe disposal system, forces girls to stay home each month during their periods. It is the collective effort of the Government and Civil Society to work together to enhance awareness and provide proper facilities for our girls to grow into happy women without any shame or taboo.

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