Ola! Time to chat about that monthly period… I really wish we didn’t have to have a meeting with menstruation but hey, what can a girl do. Many of us just go through it without any information on how to make that time of the month easier , but this blog aims to help you and equip you when that time of the month comes. This month, on the 28th of May, it is Menstruation Hygiene Day ( bet you didn’t know that existed) so we will focus on that topic.
So how can we be hygienic during menstruation?
- Change your sanitary wear regularly. This is very important. It is ideal to change at least every 3 hours or at least when your sanitary pad, cup or tampon is full. This will help you to prevent producing unpleasant odour. Wearing a pad for too long can lead to urinary tract infections, skin rashes or vaginal infections.
- Wash yourself regularly. When you are on it is recommended that you wash yourself as often as you can, mainly to eliminate odour. It would be great if you can wash yourself between each pad change.
- Do not use soap. The vagina has its own cleaning mechanism that works in a very fine balance of good and bad bacteria. Washing it with soap can kill the good bacteria making way for infections. Warm water is perfect to wash the vagina.
- Use the right washing technique. Always wash or clean the area in a motion that is from the vagina to the anus. Never wash in the opposite direction. Washing in the opposite direction can cause bacteria from the anus to lodge in the vagina and urethral opening, leading to infections.
- Discard your used sanitary product properly. It is essential to discard your used napkins or tampons properly because they are capable of spreading infections, and it will smell very foul. Wrapping it well before discarding it ensures that the smell and infection is contained. It is advised not to flush the pad or tampon down the toilet since they are capable of forming a block and can cause the toilet to back up. More importantly it is imperative that you wash your hands well after you discard your used napkin since you are likely to touch the used portion of the pad or tampon while discarding it.
- Beware of a pad rash. A pad rash is something that you might experience during a period of heavy flow. It usually occurs when the pad has been wet for a long time and rubs along the thighs causing it to chaff. To prevent this from occurring, try to stay dry during your periods. If you do have a rash, change your pads regularly and stay dry. Apply an antiseptic ointment, after a bath and before bed – this will heal the rash and prevent further chaffing. If it gets worse do visit your doctor who will be able to prescribe you a medicated powder that can keep the area dry.
- Be ready with on the go stuff. You must always be prepared for any surprises and have extra sanitary napkins. When you have your periods it is important to be ready. It is important to have extra sanitary pads or tampons properly stored in a clean pouch or paper bag, a soft towel, some paper tissues or towels and hand sanitizer. Remember that these sanitary materials will be going onto your vagina which is a very sensitive area. Be sensitive to, about how to store your napkins.
- Use one method of sanitation at a time. For women with very heavy flows at times we want to use more than one pad one the combination of a pad and tampon. This is actually not a great idea. It is better to change often than to double up on the sanitary wear. The reason why this is not a good idea is because the two pads absorb the blood and you don’t see that they are completely used up. You are then unlikely to change at regular and healthy intervals. This can lead to rashes, infections and can be uncomfortable which can actually affect your temper as well.
Now that we have learned something new let’s make the necessary menstrual hygiene changes. I am not a doctor but these are some pretty helpful tips and for some of you that may be pretty sensitive down there, maybe you are doing something wrong. Until next time… take care!
(Note: images are taken from www.oowomaniya.com)