The menstrual cycle is difficult to manage in a dignified and healthy manner for millions around the world. In the reproductive cycle, menstruation is a natural occurrence. Still, many people may not realize that there is a culture of taboos and misinformation about menstruation. In developing countries, possible health risks like vaginal infections often arise due to a lack of information about menstrual hygiene and materials.
Teenagers can face new vulnerabilities as menstruation begins in their lives. Many teenage girls face stigma, harassment, and social exclusion when they menstruate. There can be a variety of reasons why menstrual health and hygiene needs go unmet. These include gender inequality, discriminatory social norms, cultural taboos, poverty, and lack of essential services. This article will help you learn more about the importance of menstrual hygiene.
What is Menstrual Hygiene?
The menstrual cycle occurs naturally for both adolescents and premenopausal women. During adolescence, girls undergo several physiological changes, including the beginning of menstruation. Women can prevent infections of the reproductive and urinary systems by practicing menstrual hygiene during menstruation. Access to sanitary pads and appropriate toilets is not the only issue to consider. It is also about supporting women and girls in managing their menstruation with dignity in an environment that values and supports them.
In addition, at least 500 million women and girls worldwide lack adequate access to menstrual hygiene facilities. Menstrual hygiene products are essential for preventing diseases and infections.
What is Good Menstrual Hygiene?
There is a direct correlation between menstrual hygiene and overall well-being. Infections and diseases can occur during your period if you don’t maintain proper hygiene. Ultimately, this can cause reproductive health issues. There are a few good menstrual hygiene practices every woman must follow when dealing with periods.
Keeping just one pad on all day isn’t a good idea
Make sure you keep changing your sanitary pad every few hours. Itching, irritation, or rashes can occur when the pad is worn for long periods. You can prevent infections by changing your pad frequently. Tampons work the same way.
Ensure your tampons are clean
Make sure your tampon is clean and safe to use. If you are using a disposable tampon, ensure the seal remains intact. You should sterilize it every time you use it if it’s reusable. Before inserting a tampon, make sure your hands are clean.
Make sure not to overuse soap or vaginal washes
A little soap is all you need to clean your vagina since it is said to be self-cleaning. Most experts do not recommend vaginal washes because they tend to disturb the vaginal flora.
What is the Purpose of Menstrual Hygiene?
Every woman needs to maintain good menstrual hygiene. Here are some top-notch purposes of menstrual hygiene:
- It reduces the risk of urinary tract infections
- It reduces the appearance of rashes on the genital area
- It assists in maintaining a healthy reproductive system
- It helps in preventing cervical cancer
What is Best Menstrual Hygiene During Menstruation?
Here are some menstrual hygiene tips you can follow to stay healthy during your periods:
Frequently change menstrual hygiene products
To maintain good menstrual hygiene, it is essential to change pads and tampons frequently. When we are most active in the day, we should change our pads every 4-6 hours. The blood flow is higher during the day due to increased activity levels.
Sleeping lowers blood flow so that it can be worn overnight. Menstrual hygiene also requires changing tampons every four hours. If you use the product for a prolonged time, you risk developing rashes and accumulating harmful bacteria that can spread infections.
Wear comfortable and light clothing
When you wear comfortable clothing during your menstrual cycle, you will not only feel relaxed, but you will also maintain good hygiene. It is essential to wear clothing that is light on the body and is designed to provide maximum comfort while moving. In a tight dress, the body is put under undue stress, sweat is produced, and bacteria can flourish. It is highly recommended to wear cotton clothes and underwear during menstruation.
Consider using natural soaps and hygiene products
During the menstrual cycle, it is essential to maintain proper hygiene. It is best to wash the genital area using warm water without using chemical soaps or products. In addition to irritating the genital area, these chemicals can lead to heavier vaginal discharge and itching. A great alternative to chemical-laden products is wet wipes.
Infertility, diseases, infections, and other health problems can occur due to poor menstrual hygiene. Infections, including hepatitis B and thrush, can be spread if you don’t wash your hands when changing menstrual products. Many charitable organizations around the world are working to improve menstrual hygiene.
(The information in this article should not be taken as a substitute for professional medical advice.)