STUDY OF FACTORS AFFECTING TOTAL NUMBER OF LIVING CHILDREN AMONG MARRIED WOMEN OF REPRODUCTIVE AGE GROUP IN A SLUM AREA IN MUMBAI.
Background:Marriages and having children is a universal phenomenon in India and in slum areas of cities there is a tendency to have more number of children in married women due to many interrelated causes. In the current study we have tried to explore some of the reasons for having more number of children in urban slum area. Objective: To study the effect of education,age at marriage of women and socioeconomic status of the family onnumber of children among married women of reproductive age group in a slum area of Mumbai. Materials and Methods: A cross sectional observational study was carried out in the field practice area of an Urban Health Training Centre of a teaching hospital in Mumbai. Results:A sample of 342 women was taken by random sampling. Questionnaire was administered in the local language.It was found that illiteracy, marriage before 18 years of age and low socioeconomic status,are significantly associated with more than 3living children.Out of these, socioeconomic status of the family had the greatest influence on bearing of the total number of children, followed by the age of women at marriage and then educational status of the women. Conclusion:Improvement in education, socioeconomic status and increasing the age at marriage can prove to be very effective for the control of population.