World Menstrual Hygiene Day is observed on May 28 across the globe. This aims to raise awareness of the importance for girls and women to maintain hygiene during menstruation. Its goal is also to raise awareness about the challenges women and girls face due to menstruation and highlight solutions that address these challenges. In this article, we will be discussing the basic menstrual hygiene tips that should be followed during menstruation.
The World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2018 theme is 'Menstruation matters to everyone, everywhere'. The word menstruation remains a taboo in India which was incredibly and evidently portrayed in the movie 'Padman'.
Despite efforts, the stigma attached to menstruation still remains. Menstruation is a healthy biological process of a female's reproductive cycle; yet culturally, it's still considered to be dirty and impure in India.
Most women remain unhygienic during menstruation like wearing the same sanitary napkin for the whole day or not cleaning the genital area properly.
Read here to know the basic menstrual hygiene tips.
1. Change Regularly
Menstrual blood, when it leaves the body gets contaminated with the body's innate organisms. As your pad gets damp and wet, it will have organisms from your vagina, sweat from your genitals, etc. The warm and moist areas are the breeding grounds for organisms and they tend to multiply and can lead to conditions like vaginal infections, urinary tract infections, and skin rashes.
2. Wash Your Genitals Regularly
Apart from cleaning your body, it is also essential that you clean your genitals during menstruation because when you menstruate, the blood tends to enter tiny spaces like the skin in between your labia around the opening of the vagina and this excess blood should be washed away. This basic menstrual hygiene tip also beats bad odour from the vaginal region.
3. Avoid Using Soaps Or Vaginal Hygiene Products
The vagina can clean itself on its own and works in a very fine balance of good and bad bacteria. Washing the vaginal area with soap can kill the good bacteria, paving the way for infections. Wash the area with lukewarm water; you can use a mild soap on the external parts but don't use it inside your vagina or vulva.
4. Choose Your Method Of Sanitation
If you prefer using a tampon, remember that it is essential to choose one that has the lowest absorbency rate for your flow. The best basic menstrual hygiene tip is to stick to one type and brand of sanitary napkin as frequent switching of brands can make your vagina uncomfortable.
5. Use The Right Washing Technique
The importance of menstrual hygiene is using the right washing technique. Always wash the area in a motion that is from the vagina to the anus; do not wash in the opposite direction. Washing in the opposite direction can cause the bacteria from the anus to come in contact with the vagina and urethral opening, leading to infections.
6. Discard the Sanitary Pad Properly
One of the basics of menstrual hygiene management is discarding your used napkins and tampons properly because they are capable of spreading infections. It is advisable to not flush the pad or tampon down the toilet, instead wrap it properly before discarding it.
7. Have A Bath Regularly
In some cultures, it is strictly prohibited to take a bath during periods. But the fact is having a bath during your periods is necessary as it not only cleanses your body but also gives you a chance to clean your genitals as well. Having a bath also helps you in getting rid of menstrual cramps, especially in warm water.
8. Beware Of A Pad Rash
Most women experience pad rash during a heavy flow. It usually occurs when the pad has been wet for a long time and rubs along the thighs, causing skin abrasion. To prevent this, change your pads every six hours.
9. Wear Comfortable Clothes
One of the ways to celebrate World Menstrual Hygiene Day is to wear comfortable and loose-fitting clothes. Wearing loose clothing rather than jeans or tight-fitting clothes during periods can make you comfortable. This will ensure the airflow around the sensitive area as well as prevent sweating.
This World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2018, follow the basic menstrual hygiene tips and learn to take care of your body, health, and mind during menstruation.
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