Have you ever imagined about having no access to sanitary menstrual items, toilet or running water when you are on your period? Yes, this is the story of many girls who live in rural areas of India. They often have to deal with embarrassment, shame or feelings of isolation during their periods. Not just they are viewed by people as “contaminated” and “impure”, but they also don’t get enough rest. Menstruation is not the topic that cannot be discussed freely by mothers and teachers, but in rural areas, girls still feel hesitant to do health talk on menstrual hygiene. Well, there are several awareness programs and advertisements run by the government for menstrual education in rural areas that will be helpful in women empowerment and safety.
Why is menstrual education necessary in rural areas?
• In many rural areas of India, lack of access to sanitary napkins and awareness makes it difficult for girls to go to school and that is the reason they tend to drop out of their school. Hence, it is important to educate them about menstruation so that they can continue their education.
• Due to lack of menstrual education, most of the girls in rural areas use unhygienic products such as wood shavings, sand, and damp/dirty clothes repeatedly that causes serval infections and diseases. In some cases, they have to face life-threatening diseases like uterus cancer and they never conceive a baby in their life.
• In some places, there is the unavailability of high-absorbent and good-quality affordable products, hence their girls have to compromise on their health and hygiene.
All the above-mentioned reasons are enough to understand the importance of menstrual education in rural areas, as a condition of menstruating women in rural India can only be improved when people will get educated about menstrual hygiene. It has been estimated that around 88% of women in rural India don’t use sanitary napkins and that cause them several internal infections.
There are some organizations exists that work on education and spreading awareness over menstruation and distribute sanitary napkins. This can help make people aware of menstruation and allow girls to discuss their menstrual symptoms and any issues associated with it with their mothers, friends, and teachers. Thus, it is important to educate women about menstruation cycle, stages of the menstrual cycle and menstrual hygiene management so that they can ensure their health and wellness.