Determinants and impact of early marriage on mother and her newborn in an urban area of Davangere: a cross-sectional study


  • Navneet Kaur Sandhu Department of Community Medicine, J.J.M Medical College, Davangere, Karnataka, India
  • Geethalakshmi R. G. Department of Community Medicine, S.S.I.M.S & R.C, Davangere, Karnataka, India



Early marriage, Literacy, Socio-economic status, Legislations, Impact of early marriage


Background: Early marriage is a long established custom in India. In spite of the legislations prohibiting early marriages, the prevalence of child marriages in our country is 30.2%, with the highest prevalence in Rajasthan (35.4%) and lowest in Himachal Pradesh (0.5%).Thus, this study was undertaken to study the prevalence, determinants and impact of early marriage on the mother and her newborn in an urban area of Davangere.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted over a period of 6 months in the Urban Family Welfare Centre, Doddapete. A total of 900 mothers were interviewed with the help of pre- designed and semi-structured questionnaire after taking informed consent.

Results: The prevalence of child marriage in the present study was found to be 13% with 81% mothers belonging to lower socio- economic status and 77% belonging to Muslim religion. Most (62%) mothers married before the age of 18 years due to economic reasons. 54% of the mothers who married before the age of 18 years faced complications during delivery. 6% of the mothers married before the age of 18 years gave birth to low birth weight babies.

Conclusions: The literacy and socio-economic status of the mother and her parents was observed as a major determinant in deciding the age at marriage. In spite of the prevailing religious traditions and socio-cultural influences that promote child marriage, an attempt should be made to educate the community regarding the medical and legal aspects of early marriage. 


Birech J. Child marriage: A cultural health phenomenon. Int J Humanities Social Sci. 2013;3(17):97-103.

Suresh Lal B. Child marriage in India: Factors and problems. Int. J Sci Res. 2015;4(4):2993-8.

Workineh S, Kibretb GD, Degu G. Determinants of early marriage among female children in Sinan district, Northwest Ethiopia. Health Sci J. 2015;9(6:1):1-7.

UNICEF; Early Marriage: Child Spouses. Innocenti Digest.,2001. Available from Accessed 18 October 2016.

Census 2011, Government of India. Provisional Population report, Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner India, Ministry of Home affairs, March 31st, 2011.

International Instituteof Population Sciences. State factsheetsof NFHS-4. IIPS and Macro ORC.; 2016. Available from: URL: Accessed 18 October 2016.

Sah RB, Subedi L, Shah U, Jha N. Factors affecting Early Age Marriage in Morang District of Nepal. Sch J Appl Med Sci. 2014;2(4):1320-4.

Sarker Obaida Nasrin and K. M. Mustafizur Rahman.Factors affecting early marriage and early conception of women: A case of slum areas in Rajshahi City, Bangladesh. Int. J Sociol Anthropol. 2012;4(2):54-62.

Planning commission, Perspective planning division: Report of the expert group to recommend the detailed methodology for identification of families living below poverty line in the urban areas. New Delhi, Government of India; December 2012.

Subramanian PK. Determinants of the Age at Marriage of Rural Women in India. Family Consumer Sci Res J. 2008;37:160-6.

WHO, Report by the Secretariat: Early marriages, adolescent and young pregnancies, 16 March 2012.

Ayuba II, Gani O. Outcome of teenage pregnancy in the Niger delta of Nigeria. Ehiop J Health Sci. 2012;22(1):45-50.

Envaladu EA, Umaru RJ, Iorapuu NO, Osagie IA, Okoh EO,Zoakah Al. Determinants and effects of girl child marriage: a cross sectional study of school girls in Plateau state, Nigeria. International Journal of Medicine and biomedical research. 2016;5(3):122-9.

Adeyinka DA, Oladimeji O, Adekanbi TI, Adeyinka FE, Falope Y, Aimakhu C. Outcome of adolescent pregnancies in southwestern Nigeria: a case–control study. J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2010;23:785–9.

Agarwal N, Reddaiah VP. Factors affecting birth weight in a suburban community. Health Popul Perspect Issue. 2005;28:189-96.




How to Cite

Sandhu, N. K., & R. G., G. (2017). Determinants and impact of early marriage on mother and her newborn in an urban area of Davangere: a cross-sectional study. International Journal Of Community Medicine And Public Health, 4(4), 1278–1283.



Original Research Articles