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Journal of Environmental and Public Health
Volume 2018, Article ID 1730964, 9 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/1730964
Review Article

Menstrual Hygiene, Management, and Waste Disposal: Practices and Challenges Faced by Girls/Women of Developing Countries

1Department of Botanical and Environmental Sciences, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, Punjab 143005, India
2Govt. Polytechnic College for Girls, Amritsar, India

Correspondence should be addressed to Rajinder Kaur; moc.oohay@2002baws

Received 26 September 2017; Accepted 12 November 2017; Published 20 February 2018

Academic Editor: Mynepalli K. C. Sridhar

Copyright © 2018 Rajanbir Kaur et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Menstruation and menstrual practices still face many social, cultural, and religious restrictions which are a big barrier in the path of menstrual hygiene management. In many parts of the country especially in rural areas girls are not prepared and aware about menstruation so they face many difficulties and challenges at home, schools, and work places. While reviewing literature, we found that little, inaccurate, or incomplete knowledge about menstruation is a great hindrance in the path of personal and menstrual hygiene management. Girls and women have very less or no knowledge about reproductive tract infections caused due to ignorance of personal hygiene during menstruation time. In rural areas, women do not have access to sanitary products or they know very little about the types and method of using them or are unable to afford such products due to high cost. So, they mostly rely on reusable cloth pads which they wash and use again. Needs and requirements of the adolescent girls and women are ignored despite the fact that there are major developments in the area of water and sanitation. Women manage menstruation differently when they are at home or outside; at homes, they dispose of menstrual products in domestic wastes and in public toilets and they flush them in the toilets without knowing the consequences of choking. So, there should be a need to educate and make them aware about the environmental pollution and health hazards associated with them. Implementation of modern techniques like incineration can help to reduce the waste. Also, awareness should be created to emphasize the use of reusable sanitary products or the natural sanitary products made from materials like banana fibre, bamboo fibre, sea sponges, water hyacinth, and so on.