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A study on knowledge about various aspects related to reproductive health among school going adolescent boys

Yadeepsinh M Jadeja, Jwalant B Joshi, Jaykumar H Nimavat, Pratik K Jasani, Hetal T Koringa, Komal P Thekdi, Shyamal K Purani, Girija P Kartha, Harsh A Mehta.

Background: World Health Organization defines adolescence as the period of life between 10 - 19 years of age. In India they represent over 1/5th of total population. A large number of them arenít aware about the knowledge regarding reproductive health, contraception, HIV/AIDS etc. These factors have serious social, economic & public health implications. According to study conducted by UNESCO, Sexually Transmitted Diseases are a major health problem among adolescence, especially in Asia. The risk increases if they lack the knowledge & are unaware about different aspects of reproductive health. Hence it was decided to conduct a study in this issue, to assess the knowledge about various aspects related to reproductive health among school going adolescents in Surendranagar city.

Objectives: To determine the level of knowledge regarding various aspects of reproductive health among school going adolescent boys & to correlate the findings with their various socio-demographic factors.

Materials & Methods: After enlisting all the schools of Surendranagar city, 2 govt. & 2 non govt. schools were selected by simple random sampling. All the boys of standard 10th & 11th of selected schools present on the day of study were included. Final sample size was 268. The information was gathered by using a pre tested, semi-structured self-administered questionnaire.

Results: Majority (62%) knew the changes occurring during puberty, 67% knew about family planning methods, 77% knew about STDs and its transmission. There was a significant difference in awareness regarding family planning & STDs amongst the students of govt. (77.34% & 80.47%) & non-govt. (55.71% & 71.43%) school respectively. The study showed lack of awareness regarding Adolescent Friendly Clinic (25%) & only 13% had visited among the study group. Friends (64.34%) & teachers (58.19%) appeared as a leading source of information regarding reproductive health awareness. Most of the students (70.02%) knew that treatment of HIV/AIDS is possible.

Conclusion: Awareness about adolescent friendly clinic needs to be improved through various means. There is a need for appropriate information, education and communication strategies for increasing awareness about family planning and STDs among the students of non-govt. schools.

Key words: Adolescent, HIV/AIDS, STDs, Reproductive health, Family-planning

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