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Blog: Menstrual Hygiene

Menstrual Hygiene

Menstrual Hygiene

Menstrual Hygiene: A Critical Aspect of Women’s Health – an article by Dr. Ruby Bansal – a Preventive

Dr. Ruby Bansal
Dr. Ruby Bansal

health & Infectious Diseases Expert and Joint Secretary of WOW India…

Menstrual Hygiene Day, observed annually on May 28, highlights the importance of good menstrual hygiene management at a global level. This day serves to break the silence, raise awareness, and change negative social norms surrounding menstrual health. Ensuring proper menstrual hygiene is vital not only for health and well-being but also for dignity and education.

Importance of Menstrual Hygiene

Good menstrual hygiene is crucial for several reasons:

Health: Poor menstrual hygiene can lead to infections such as urinary tract infections, reproductive tract infections, and even long-term reproductive health issues. Using clean menstrual products and maintaining genital hygiene helps prevent these health complications

Dos and Don’ts of Menstrual Hygiene


Change Menstrual Products Regularly

Do change sanitary pads every 4-6 hours, tampons every 4-8 hours, and menstrual cups every 8-12 hours (or as recommended). This helps prevent infections and odour.
Wash Hands Before and After Handling Menstrual Products.

Do wash your hands with soap and water before and after inserting or removing a tampon, pad, or menstrual cup to avoid introducing bacteria to the genital area.
Maintain Genital Hygiene.

Do wash the genital area at least once a day with water. Use a mild, unscented soap to clean the external genitalia if needed, but avoid using soap inside the vagina as it can disrupt the natural pH balance.

Use Clean and Dry Underwear

Do wear clean and dry cotton underwear to allow the genital area to breathe and stay dry. Change your underwear if it becomes damp or soiled.

Dispose of Used Menstrual Products Properly

Do wrap used sanitary pads or tampons in paper and dispose of them in a trash bin. If using a menstrual cup, empty it into the toilet and rinse it with water before reinserting.
Stay Hydrated and Maintain a Balanced Diet.

Do drink plenty of water and eat a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and iron to stay healthy and manage menstrual symptoms.


Don’t Use Scented Products

Don’t use scented pads, tampons, or vaginal sprays. These products can cause irritation and disrupt the natural balance of bacteria in the vagina.

Don’t Use a Single Menstrual Product for Too Long

Don’t leave a tampon, pad, or menstrual cup in place for longer than recommended, as this can lead to bacterial growth and increase the risk of infections like Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) for tampon users.

Don’t Douche

Don’t use harsh soaps inside the vagina. The vagina is self-cleaning, and douching can disrupt its natural balance, leading to infections.

Don’t Ignore Symptoms of Infection

Don’t ignore symptoms such as unusual discharge, foul odour, itching, or burning. If you experience any of these symptoms, consult a healthcare professional promptly.

Don’t Flush Menstrual Products

Don’t flush sanitary pads, tampons, or menstrual cup contents down the toilet. This can cause blockages and environmental pollution.

Don’t Use Menstrual Products That Have Been Stored Improperly

Don’t use pads or tampons that have been stored in damp or dirty places, as they can harbour bacteria.

By following these dos and don’ts, you can ensure better menstrual hygiene, reduce the risk of infections, and promote overall health and comfort during your menstrual cycle.