Adolescence is the period during which many PHYSICAL, EMOTIONAL and PSYCHOLOGICAL changes occur.
The period between 10-19 years of age is considered as adolescence.
The rapidly changing body proportions and the new sensations attributed to sexual development confuse and cause anxiety to adolescence.
Puberty is a process of growth and maturation that leads to reproductive capability.
A girl attains puberty at the age of 11 -13 yrs and her growth is completed at the age of 18 years.
Many consider onset of menarche as sign of attaining puberty, but changes of puberty start one year prior to menarche.
Pituitary gland in brain -> hormones are released at time of puberty -> reaches ovary through blood stream and acts in ovaries causes their development.
Ovaries then release two hormones -> estrogen and progesterone which bring about physical and emotional changes.
PHYSICAL CHANGES ->
increase in height
increase in weight
development of breasts
growth of pubic and axillary hair
development of reproductive organs
COMMON PROBLEMS DURING MENSTRUATION
1. Pain during menstruation
Some girls experience pain because of contraction of uterine muscles which occur in order to expel the blood.
-> Hot water Fomentation
-> advice girls to eat fibre rich diet and to drink several glasses of water to help digestion and prevent Constipation.
-> if pain is severe consult the doctor.
2. Irregularity of menses
During initial periods cycles are irregular .It takes 2-3 yrs for the menses to get regularised.
3. White discharge
A slight amount of white discharge occurs through vagina opening either before or after menses. This is normal phenomenon occuring to keep the vagina moist.
But if discharge is excessive , foul smelling, different colour (thick curdy white , greenish , ) causes itching, then is a need to consult doctor.
-> maintaining personal hygiene helps to reduce the problem.
Now a days we see our next generation facing lots of Menstrual issues basically most girls landing in irregular cycle , obesity and PCOS due to the current life style .
-> Girls and their parents should understand the concept of balanced diet and the importance of including food items from all the 3 food groups.
NUTRITION DURING ADOLESCENCE
The adolescence need more calories and other nutrients due to spurt in growth and increase in physical activity.
If they do not eat enough or eat the food lacking in nutritive value ,their growth is adversely affected and they complain of leg pain and tiredness.
Deficiencies during this period also impairs intellectual development and can delay maturation too.
Regular Balanced includes_
Cereals, jaggery, Pulses and dal, milk , green vegetables ,Roots,fruits.
Different food groups need to be taken together so as to have adequately balanced diet.
1.Proteins-> to grow ->
Pulses and legumes, milk , eggs ,meat ,fish ,oilseeds.
2. Carbohydrates and Fats->
Rice ,wheat ,jawar, sugar ,potato, oil , ghee butter.
3. Vitamins and Minerals ->
Green leafy vegetables, fruits ,Ragi , Jaggery.
Balanced diet contains all the nutrients in right amounts which is essential for growth and development of the body and protect the body from different diseases.
Dr Rupali Mahadik
Amrutwel Women’s Clinic