Child marriage, defined as a formal marriage or informal union before age 18, is a reality for both boys and girls, although girls are disproportionately the most affected. About a third of women aged 20-24 years old in the developing world were married as children. Child marriage is most common in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, but there are big differences in prevalence among countries of the same region. While data from 47 countries show that, overall, the median age at first marriage is gradually increasing. This improvement has been limited primarily to girls of families with higher incomes [1, 2].
According to Sharia law boys in the 15 years and girls at the age of 9 become sexually mature . Based on Iranian civil law, minimum marriage age for girls is 13 and 15 years for boys. Adult warrant also can be issued by a judge asking a few questions before the age of 13.
Results of studies have confirmed that because girls do not mature physically at an early age, married people can get the physical problems and mood disorders depression anxiety disorders and obsessive and make dismay . Iron and calcium deficiency is very common in girls under 18 years of age and pregnancy on the risk of osteoporosis and anaemia in them increases [6, 7]. According to experts, the first year of marriage increases the risk of Cervical Cancer [8, 9].
Although normal pregnancy is associated with a feeling of great satisfaction and fulfilment, but pregnancy less than 18 years is one of the risk factors that put a person at risk of high-risk pregnancy. Adolescents Pregnancy is a risk for two reasons:
A: The lack of information on juvenile for necessary care during pregnancy and infant care; B) Lack of partner knowledge about these cares. New born infants whose mothers suffer from early and forced marriage are at risk of low birth weight, malnutrition and disability .
International human rights organizations have warned about the increasing number of brides who are aged less than 18 years. In 2010, 67 million women 20-24 around the world had been married before the age of 18. The number of children who enter into marriage or cohabitation each year varies according to region and across countries while countries with the highest prevalence of child marriage are concentrated in Western and Sub-Saharan Africa, due to population size, the largest numbers of child brides reside in South Asia [11, 12].
Among all developed countries, America has the highest teen pregnancy rate. Every year more than 1.1 million children became pregnant and their delivery will include approximately 295 total births. One out of every 10 American girls at 15-19 years old has experienced pregnancy which 95% of them are junk . According to the United Nations, In Afghanistan now nearly 75% of Afghan girls are forced married before the age of 16 that 45% of them has done at 13-15 years old.
According to the results of Iranian studies, more than 7.7% of girls in Tehran and 40% in Sistan and Baluchestan states were forced marriage before age of 18. It has also been also well known that 16% of married females were in the age group of 15-19 years. The figure for the whole country in rural and urban areas has been reported 19.6% and 13.7% respectively. Furthermore, education had a meaningful relation with child marriage whereas marriage rate were high amongst illiterate youth [15, 16].
Given the above, this study carried out to determine the cause of the marriage under 18 years in the Hervi village of Tabriz city in Iran.
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