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Use of traditional contraceptive methods in India & its socio-demographic determinants
Authors: Ram F., Shekhar C., and Chowdhury B.
Source: Indian Journal of Medical Research, 140 Suppl:S17-28.
Topic(s): Contraception
Country: Asia
Published: NOV 2014
Abstract: BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVES: The high use of traditional contraceptive methods may have health repercussions on both partners. High failure rate, lack of protection from sexually transmitted diseases are some of the examples of these repercussions. The aim of this study was to understand the level, trends, pattern, volume and socio-demographic determinants of using traditional contraceptive methods in the Indian context. METHODS: Percentages, per cent distribution, cross-tabulation and multinomial logistic regression analyses were carried out. The data from the three rounds of National Family Health survey (NFHS) were used. The unit level District Level Household Survey (2007-2008) were mainly used to carry out the analysis in this paper. Marriage rates for States and Union Territories (UTs) were projected for the period of 2001-2011 to estimate the volume of traditional contraceptive users. These rates are required to get the number of eligible couples as on 2011 in the respective State/UT. RESULTS: The latest round of the District Level Household Survey (2007-2008) revealed that 6.7 per cent currently married women were using traditional contraceptive methods in India. More than half of the currently married women (56%) have ever used these methods. In terms of socio-demographic determinants, the odds ratios of using these methods were significantly higher for women aged 35 years and above, rural, Hindu, other than Scheduled Castes/Tribes (SCs/STs), secondary and above educated, non-poor, having two plus living children, and at least one surviving son in most of the states as well as at the national level. The northeastern region showed higher odds ratios (5 times) of women using traditional contraceptive methods than the southern region. INTERPRETATION & CONCLUSIONS: A large number of currently married women have ever used the traditional contraceptive methods in India. On the basis of the findings from this study, the total size of those women who were using traditional methods and those who were having unmet need, and are required to use modern spacing methods of family planning in achieving the reproductive goals, is around 53 million. Women from a set of specific socio-demographic backgrounds are more likely to use these methods. A regional pattern has also emerged in use of tradition contraceptive methods in India.