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FOUNDATION REG- CG/6306 DTD. 24/11/2016       DARPAN REG- CG/2019/0229290       IT 12AA REG-: ITBA/EXM/S/12AA/2020-21/1028058845(1)       IT 80G REG- AAFAA2435BF20206      

  • Menstruation is normal and a healthy part of life and yet girls and women in India go through extreme struggles to manage their period every month. A large chuck of the Indian population believes this natural cycle to be a ‘curse’, ‘impure’ and ‘dirty’ among other things. Surprisingly, many girls reach menarche without critical information about menstruation, resulting in fear and stress. Also, the belief about the cause of mensuration is:
  • Menstruation or menses is the natural bodily process of releasing blood and associated matter from the uterus through the vagina as part of the menstrual cycle. The four phases of the menstrual cycle are menstruation, the follicular phase, ovulation and the luteal phase.
  • Most females experience minor symptoms just before and during their periods.
  • • Tender breasts.
  • • Bloating, fluid retention.
  • • Muscle aches.
  • • Joint pain.
  • • Headaches.
  • • Acne.
  • • Abdominal cramps.
  • • Diarrhea or constipation.
  • Menstruation defines the onset of menstruation, which is a normal physiologic process that occurs at regular monthly intervals. Menarche typically occurs around age 12 but a few years earlier or later is completely normal. Menarche happens during a time of physical and sexual maturation in adolescence known as puberty.
  • Menstruation hygiene materialsare the products used to catch menstrual flow, such as Sanitary pads, Re-useable cloths, tampons or Menstrual cups, cotton wools etc. More than 64 per cent of menstruating girls and women in India use an old cloth, which is often reused, ashes, newspapers, dried leaves and husk sand during periods.
  • In India, menstruation is surrounded by myths and misconceptions with along list of "do's" and "don'ts" for women. During their menstruating days,women are prohibited from participating in day-to-day activities. They are notallowed to enter the house. A woman must be “purified” before she is allowedto return to her family and they are forbidden from performing any rituals. Sheis prohibited to enter the kitchen or a temple as people believe that anythingshe touches will go bad or rot. But the truth is that a menstruating woman isgoing through a natural and healthy biological process.

    Hygiene-related practices of women during menstruation are of considerableimportance, as it has a health impact in terms of increased vulnerability toreproductive tract infections (RTI). Not only will she be at risk of infection, buther education, self-esteem, and confience also suffr in a major way.

    Thre are various other issues like awareness, availability and quality of napkins,regular supply, privacy, water supply, disposal of napkins, reproductive healtheducation and family support which needs simultaneous attntion for promotionof menstrual hygiene.

  • FACTS ABOUT MENSTRUAL HYGIENE IN INDIA

  • According to National Family Health Survey 2015-2016, out of the 336 millionmenstruating women in India about 121 million (36%) women are using sanitarynapkins, locally or commercially produced.

    66% of girls don’t even know about menstruation when they fist start theirperiod.

    Research shows that approximately 23 million of adolescent girls drop out ofschool when they start menstruating.

    Adolescent Girls usually missing school every month for more than 5 daysbecause of lack of menstrual hygiene management facilities i.e. availability ofsanitary napkins, awareness about menstruation etc.

    Many women decrease their intake of water so that they don’t have frequent thetoilet while on their period.

    Lack of awareness about menstruation affcts not just the physical health butalso psychological and mental health of girls who are found to suffr fromdepression, stress and low self confience among other things.

    Unhygienic period health and disposal practices can have major consequenceson the health of women including increased chances of contracting cervicalcancer and Reproductive Tract Infections.