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Reproductive Health Seeking Behavior Of The Young Female Tribal Workers In Chittagong: Implications On Fertility

4245 words - 17 pages

Promote the right of every woman, man, and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity. Ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person is free from HIV/AIDS, every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect. Because every one counts. Thoraya Obaid, Executive Director, UNFPA 1.1 BACK GROUND OF THE STUDY Bangladesh though a small country in area, is one of the densely populated countries in the world along with136.7 (BDHS 2004) million people having 953 ( national economic review 2007) persons per square kilometer. But it is a country of variety with different landscapes and waterscapes. The south- eastern hill tracts ...view middle of the document...

The communities have specific gods for their health and disease, for calamities, diseases of cattle, bite of snakes and dogs and so on. All these deities have their own respective sphere and field. Elwin (1955) noted various gods associated with children’s disease, cough, cold, blindness, madness, diseases of pregnant women, and so on. Propitiating the respective god associated with the disease either directly or indirectly through shamns can cure most of these diseases. The Bhopa and traditional healers occupy prominent place in the treatment of diseases. If the reason of illness is identified as evil-eye, sorcery or witchcraft, the tribals always would call their Bhopa instead of consulting a doctor, as they strongly feel that the doctor are quite helpless against such evil forces which can only be counteracted by Bhopa (Nagda, 1992). More than half (58%) of tribal women and 80 percent of children are suffering from anemia (NFHS-2). In tribals,


problems of malnutrition contribute to poverty, illiteracy, lack of nutritional food and health education of the parents, family food habits etc .In sanitation environment and unsafe drinking water create a problem of diarrhea, dysentery, parasitic infections and skin diseases. The tribal people believe that when the menstrual period is delayed by a month, a woman is assumed to be pregnant. She does not take Mahua liquor. There is no restriction on her daily routine work. The delivery (Japa) is conducted in hut called Jopada. The hut is cleaned and pasted with cow dung in advance. The pregnant women, when labour pain starts, go to the hut. In case of any problem, during the pregnancy, they call traditional Dai of the community, and sometimes ANM and Doctor. Elderly ladies of the community help in conducting the delivery. The naval cord is cut by mother herself with the help of a Bamboo strip, knife and stone They prefer to cut the naval cord with a bamboo strip because it is more safe from infections (Nagda,1992).After cutting the naval cord, the stump is tied and mahua oil is applied. The mother is given a small quantity of mahua liquor and water mixed with haldi (turmeric) and gour (Jaggary) for drinking for about 2 days. They think that these drinks will bring out all harmful substances from the body of the mother. Mothers are advised to avoid sour foods and green vegetables because they could adversely affect health of the mother and the child. The colostrum is discarded and the baby is breast fed after one day of delivery. The child is breast fed upto 2-3 years. The supplementary food is given after 5-6 months. They do not stop breast-feeding during the sickness of the child. In the recent couple of years particularly after the Chittagong Hill Tracts Treaty, 1997, the lifestyle and socio-economic pattern is getting a gradual change. Besides males, women of these tribal communities are coming out of their hilly boundaries and getting involved in various kinds of jobs like non-tribal people...

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