World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2023: The onset of menstruation or the first period is celebrated as an occasion in various parts of India. Scroll down to find out more.
World Menstrual Hygiene Day is celebrated every year on May 28 around the world to raise awareness about the onset of menstruation and menstrual hygiene. The day highlights the importance of menstrual hygiene as part of our overall health and well-being.
The first menstrual period occurs after pubertal growth onset, known as menarche, while the average age of menarche is 12-15 years. changes in the body. Although known as a big change, talking about periods is still taboo in many parts of the world. However, the onset of menstruation or the first period is celebrated as an occasion in various parts of India.
Places in India Celebrating Girls’ First Period
The state of Karnataka celebrates the onset of menstruation. It is celebrated as a grand occasion when girls wear sari for the first time, signifying growth and maturity. It is half sari as women are not allowed to wear half sari until marriage. The function of celebrating the first period is known as ‘Ritu Shuddhi’ or ‘Ritu Kala Sanskar’ and during this celebration, girls are told important things about periods, so that they do not face any difficulties.
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In Tamil Nadu, a girl’s first period is celebrated as ‘Manjal Neerattu Visa’ where guests are invited and the girl’s uncle builds a hut out of mango, coconut and neem leaves. The girl is bathed by her relatives with turmeric water and stays in the hut. She is dressed in a silk sari and adorned with jewels. After this, a ritual known as ‘Punya Dhanan’ is performed where the hut built by her uncle is removed and a priest purifies the house.
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In Assam, the ceremony called ‘Tulonia Biya’ commemorates a girl’s first period. The ceremony is held like a wedding, where the girl is prohibited from doing any chores and is asked to stay in a room by herself. She is kept secluded for seven days, as it is inauspicious to see the sun, moon, and stars during this time. After seven days, the girl is arranged and married to a banana plant and the guests give the girl gifts.
In the state of Andhra Pradesh, when a girl has her first period, the ceremony known as ‘Pedamanishi Pandaga’ is performed to celebrate the onset of menstruation. The first, fifth and last day of the menstrual cycle is commemorated.
The start of periods in Odisha is celebrated in a three-day ceremony known as ‘Raja Prabha’, where Mother Earth is believed to have her periods during these days. During the celebrations, the girl rests completely and refrains from doing any work.
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