Different products, different routines
A variety of products help deal with the period flow: cloth or cloth pads, disposable sanitary napkins, tampons, and menstrual cups. A person may choose a product that they feel is comfortable and affordable to her. However, with each product, there is a set of measures to follow to stay clean and infection-free. Read about hygiene for various menstrual products here.
Staining and odour
Despite using products to catch the menstrual flow, it is possible that some blood might find its way out and stain our clothes. But, there is nothing to be ashamed of. It is a natural process that happens to everyone.
We must, however, prevent foul odour by replacing our menstrual-hygiene products at recommended intervals, as it also prevents the possibility of inviting infections. A general tin-like smell is considered normal during periods, as the discharge from the vagina contains blood and some tissue that lines the uterus walls.
Keeping the vulva and upper-legs as dry as possible is recommended to keep away infections and unpleasant odours.
Bathing and general hygiene during periods
If wearing external products like cloth and sanitary pads, it is necessary to remove them while bathing. Tampons and menstrual cups can, however, be left inside the vagina while bathing during periods.
We must wash the vulva thoroughly with water: using our hands to clean any blood deposits between the outer and inner labia and the opening of the vagina. We must never use any soap inside the vagina or around its opening.
Deodorants and other application products are also a strict no. The vagina has its mechanism to keep itself clean. Any cosmetic product can disturb its health and cause infections.
Sex and hygiene during periods
We can engage in sex during our or our partner’s periods. But for intercourse, menstrual-hygiene products like cups and tampons should be removed as they might cause discomfort upon being pushed.
Tampons have a risk of getting pushed further up in the vagina if worn during intercourse. This must be avoided, at any rate. To deal with the blood during intercourse, we may spread an old towel or sheet, that can be easily washed for any spillage.
An important thing is for the male partner to wear a condom for intercourse during periods as sexually transmitted diseases can be exchanged more easily during this time -- due to period blood and a relatively open cervix in the woman.
Love Matters and Miss Menses wish all women a happy and safe period on the #NoMoreLimits World Menstrual Hygiene Day (May 28).
Read more on Menstrual Products Hygiene: Top Facts