The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
Prof. KKS posed the problem and did more of conceptualization. AP performed the data analysis, interpretation, literature review and report writing. Both authors read and approved the final manuscript.
There exist ample of research literature investigating the various facet of contraceptive use behaviors in India but the use of contraception by married Indian women, prior to having their first pregnancy has been neglected so far. This study attempts to identify the socio demographic determinants and differentials of contraceptive use or non use by a woman in India, before she proceeds to have her first child. The analysis was done using data from the third National Family Health Survey (2005–2006), India.
This study utilized information from 54,918 women who ever have been married and whose current age at the time of NFHS-3 survey was 15–34 years. To identify the crucial socio-demographic determinants governing this pioneering behavior, logistic regression technique has been used. Hosmer Lemeshow test and ROC curve analysis was also performed in order to check the fitting of logistic regression model to the data under consideration.
Of all the considered explanatory variables religion, caste, education, current age, age at marriage, media exposure and zonal classifications were found to be significantly affecting the study behavior. Place of residence i.e. urban - rural locality came to be insignificant in multivariable logistic regression.
In the light of sufficient evidences confirming the presence of early marriages and child bearing practices in India, conjunct efforts are required to address the socio demographic differentials in contraceptive use by the young married women prior to their first pregnancy. Encouraging women to opt for higher education, ensuring marriages only after legal minimum age at marriage and promoting the family planning programs via print and electronic media may address the existing socio economic barriers. Also, the family planning programs should be oriented to take care of the geographical variations in the study behavior.