Seventy per cent of adolescent school girls believe menstruation is a disease.
That is one of the findings from a research by the University of Education, Winneba.
The study sought to assess the knowledge and practices of menstrual hygiene among adolescent schools in the Mampong municipality of Ghana also found 53 per cent could not afford sanitary pads.
The descriptive cross-sectional study was used to assess the knowledge and practices of menstrual hygiene among adolescent school girls with at least 4 months of menstrual experiences,” according to lead investigator, Huda Abdallah Kusi of the College of Agriculture Education, Asante-Mampong, Faculty of Science and Environment Education.
The 84 participants who were within the ages of 14 to 18 were interviewed face-to-face using questionnaires.
59 of them representing 70.2 per cent indicated menstruation is a disease. Sociodemographic characteristics, economic factors, menstrual hygiene practices were captured.
Health and hygiene knowledge, culture and societal norms were also considered.
The research contained in the Ghana Science Association Webinar book of abstracts found 59 per cent of participants could pay their schools fees.
60 per cent of them had access to portable water and changed sanitary pad twice daily whiles 46 per cent could afford sanitary products.
It’s not therefore surprising, the researchers found 59 per cent showered twice daily.
The study which also involved Departments of Science Education and Environmental Health and Sanitation found 67 per cent of the students considered menstruation to be unhygienic.
The researchers conclude: “Menstrual hygiene practices for adolescent school girls in Mampong municipality were largely influenced by socioeconomic capacities of their parents.
They recommend: “knowledge about menstrual hygiene practices among the girls were minimal hence the need for additional education and enlightenment.”