NCERT Solutions for Class 12-science Biology Chapter 4 - Reproductive Health
Chapter 4 - Reproductive Health Exercise 66
Reproductive health refers to total well-being in all aspects of reproduction, i.e. physical, emotional, behavioural and social.
The government has launched various programmes at the national level such as family planning and reproductive and child healthcare to attain total reproductive health as a social goal. This has resulted in creating awareness among the people about various reproduction-related aspects and providing facilities and support to build up a reproductive healthy society.
Significance of reproductive health in society:
- People will be free from various misconceptions and myths about all aspects of reproductive health.
- They will realise the importance of birth control methods and the advantage of a small family.
- They will follow safer and hygienic sexual practices and minimise the incidences of sexually transmitted diseases.
- They will be more aware about the problems of population explosion, sex abuse and sex-related crimes.
- They will understand the importance of breastfeeding and post-natal care of the mother and the baby.
- They will emphasise on the need to provide equal opportunities to male and female children.
Aspects of reproductive health which need to be given special attention in the present scenario:
- Creating awareness in reproductive and child healthcare.
- Introduction of sex education in schools which helps in eradicating myths and misconceptions regarding sex-related aspects.
- Counselling and creating awareness among people about reproductive organs, adolescence, safe and hygienic sexual practices, and sexually transmitted diseases such as AIDS.
- Educating people about available birth control options, care of pregnant mothers, post-natal care of the mother and the baby, and importance of breastfeeding.
- Strong infrastructural facilities, professional expertise and material support to provide medical assistance and care for the people in reproductive problems.
- Awareness about family planning, problems due to uncontrolled population growth, social evils such as sex abuse and sex-related crime.
Yes, sex education is necessary in schools because
- It imparts right information to students to save them from myths and misconceptions about sex-related aspects.
- It gives proper information about reproductive organs, adolescence and its related changes.
- It informs students about the need for safe and hygienic sexual practices, sexually transmitted diseases and helps them, especially those in adolescence, to lead a healthy reproductive life.
Yes, the reproductive health in our country has improved in the past 50 years.
Some areas of improvement are
- Decreased maternal and infant mortality rates
- Massive immunisation of children
- Increased number of medically assisted deliveries, childbirth and better post-natal care of the mother and the baby
- Increasing use of contraceptives for family planning
- Increased number of couples with small families
- Better medical facilities and detection and cure of STDs
- Improved quality of life of people
Suggested reasons for population explosion:
- Decline in death rate, maternal mortality rate and infant mortality rate
- Increase in average lifespan
- Increase in the number of people in the reproductive age
- Control of fatal diseases and epidemics
- Better public health care and greater medical attention
- Advancement in medical technology and better sanitary conditions
- Increased agricultural production, better storage and transport facilities of food to avoid hunger deaths
- Contraceptives prevent or delay pregnancy.
- They do not interfere with sexual drive, desire or the sexual act of the user.
- They have certain ill effects, but they are not significant.
- They are not the regular requirements for reproductive health.
- They help reduce the birth rate as they prevent the formation of gametes or their fertilisation or the implantation of the embryo.
- They help avoid unwanted pregnancies and reduce the risk of sexually transmitted diseases.
- Hence, the use of contraceptives is justified because they act only for the betterment of the individual and society.
An ideal contraceptive should be
- Should have no or least side effect
- Should not interfere with sexual drive, desire and the sexual act of the user
- Should be effective and reversible
When the gonads are removed, the basic functions of the reproductive system such as secretion of hormones and gamete production are stopped completely. There is a permanent loss of fertilisation capacity and the reversibility of the process is very poor. Hence, the removal of gonads cannot be considered a contraceptive option.
The foetal sex determination test or amniocentesis is banned in our country as some parents misuse this test. On knowing that the sex of the unborn child is female, these parents abort the child. Ultimately, this has reduced the number of females as compared to the males in our country, causing an unfavourable sex ratio. Considering the misuse of this technique in the present scenario, a ban on this test is justified.
Otherwise, amniocentesis is an extremely useful prenatal diagnostic technique helpful in detecting genetic abnormalities and biochemical and enzymatic disorders in the developing foetus. If used satisfactorily, this technique can diagnose even the most serious incurable congenital defect in the foetus.
Couples may face infertility because of physical, immunological and even psychological factors, congenital diseases and drugs. Diagnosis and corrective treatment of some of these disorders can be achieved in specialised health care units called infertility clinics. Special techniques called assisted reproductive technologies (ART) can assist infertile couples to bear children.
Some methods to assist infertile couples to have children:
In vitro fertilisation-Embryo transfer (IVF-ET)
The egg of the donor is removed and fertilised in vitro by the donor sperm in a culture medium under sterile conditions. The embryo is then transferred to the donor’s body for further development.
Success rate: Less than 20%
It is of two types—ZIFT and IUT.
When the fertilised egg reaches the 8-celled (blastomere) stage, it is transferred into the fallopian tube for further development.
When the fertilised egg reaches the 32-celled (more than 8 blastomeres) stage, it is transferred into the uterus for further development.
In vivo fertilisation (Surrogacy)
The embryo is formed by in vivo fertilisation in a fertile female and is then transferred to the infertile female who cannot conceive.
Success rate: About 65%
Gamete intrafallopian transfer (GIFT)
Both sperm and unfertilised oocytes are collected and transferred into the fallopian tube of another female who cannot produce eggs but can provide a suitable environment for fertilisation and development.
Success rate: 27–30%
Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)
The sperm is directly injected into the ovum to form an embryo in the laboratory.
Success rate: 60–70%
Artificial insemination (AI)
The semen collected either from the husband or a healthy donor is artificially introduced either into the vagina or into the uterus of the female.
Success rate: 20–40%
The following measures should be taken to avoid contracting STDs:
- Avoid blood transfusion from drug abusers or infected persons
- Avoid sharing of injection needles and surgical instruments
- Avoid sex with an unknown partners/multiple partners
- Always use condoms during intercourse
- Seek medical help from a qualified doctor for early detection and cure, in case of doubt
(a) True. Because of internal factors such as incompatibility, abortion can occur spontaneously too.
(b) False. Infertility can occur because of defects in the couple. It is not only caused by abnormalities in females but also in males such as low sperm count and less mobile sperms.
(c) True. Lactational amenorrhoea is a method of contraception as ovulation does not occur during this period of intense lactation following parturition. It is effective up to a period of six months.
(d) True. Creating awareness about sex-related aspects removes the myths and misconceptions about them and improves the reproductive health of people.
(a) Surgical methods of contraception do not prevent gamete formation; rather, they prevent the transfer of gametes to the reproductive channels and hence prevent conception.
(b) Most sexually transmitted diseases are curable if detected early and treated properly. However, some sexually transmitted diseases, such as AIDS, are not curable.
(c) As the awareness level is low in rural areas, oral pills are not popular with rural females. They are commonly used by educated urban women.
(d) In ET techniques, 8-celled embryos are transferred into the fallopian tube and more than 8-celled embryos are transferred into the uterus.
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