Research in the past decade has revealed average to poor menstrual health among many Iranian girls. The present study investigated the effectiveness of a health promotion project on improving menstrual health in adolescent girls in Iran.
A quasi-experimental study was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the health intervention program. A total of 698 students (study participants and controls) in several schools in Mazandaran province, Iran were included. The project comprised 10 two-hour educational sessions. Educational topics included the significance of adolescence, physical and emotional changes during adolescence, pubertal and menstruation health and premenstrual syndrome. A self-administered questionnaire measuring demographic characteristics, behaviors during menstruation, menstrual patterns, sources of information about menstruation and personal health data was administered. The questionnaire was administered to all participating students after the experimental group received the training.
Among the most significant results was the impact of educational sessions on bathing and genital hygiene. A total of 61.6% in the experimental group compared with 49.3% in the control group engaged in usual bathing during menstruation (p = 0.002). Individual health status was significantly statistically correlated with menstrual health. Attitude towards menstruation was also significantly related to menstrual health.
The present study confirms that educational interventions, such as the health promotion project in this study, can be quite effective in promoting menstrual health.