Reproductive Morbidity and Health Seeking Behaviour of Adolescent Women in Rural India

Abhilasha Sharma, National Council of Applied Economic Research, India

Although reproductive health programmes since ICPD Conference in Cairo are increasingly addressing the needs of adolescents, adolescent women still face multiple barriers in accessing reproductive and sexual health services. This study is an attempt to examine the self-reported symptoms of reproductive morbidity including gynecological, obstetric and contraceptive morbidity and health seeking behaviour of adolescent women in rural India. It also includes an exploration of reasons for non-utilization of services. The results of the study show high prevalence of gynecological morbidity. Similarly, a significant number of adolescent women were reported to be suffering from complications during pregnancy, during and after delivery, and after the use of contraception. The study found that adolescent women generally do not discuss about these symptoms and few women seek treatment, especially due to embarrassment, and financial constraint. Moreover, women ignore symptoms as they have accepted them as part of their reproductive life.

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Presented in Session 39: Adolescent Reproductive Health in Developing Countries