Today is Menstrual Hygiene Day.
When I was younger, I hated going shopping with my mum to buy sanitary towels or pads. She would ask me to pick them out and I would absolutely feel the whole world was looking at me! The embarrassment is better imagined than felt! I would get them and bury them under whatever else we had bought! My mum could not understand what all the ‘drama’ was about. She would jokingly ask me whether I felt the people in the shops would actually be surprised to know that a big girl like me was ‘seeing’ her period. I didn’t care. It didn’t stop the embarrassment J
Fast forward to many years later….now I walk into shops and don’t even bother to get a basket to put pads in. I just pick them up and pay for them at the counter. My daughter, while not exactly embarrassed, makes a point of getting a basket, even if that’s the only thing we’re getting J But, that’s the whole point of today…there should be no embarrassment in having a period. It’s a right of passage and not an embarrassment. Mothers, fathers, brothers and indeed, the entire community should work hand in hand to ensure that everyone sees this as a normal phenomenon. If a girl gets stained and a guy sees this in school, it shouldn’t be a subject of laughter or fun. He should be bold and caring enough to walk up to the girl and perhaps offer his cardigan to her until she can deal with the stain.
Question is, are we bringing up our young men to be this caring? Are we teaching our young women to stay clean and hygienic during the monthly flow” Here’s a reminder class on menstrual hygiene:
Have you ever had that moment when you happen to catch a whiff of yourself during your period and almost throw up? You’re not alone. It is interesting though that the blood in menstrual flow actually doesn’t smell bad. It is the bacteria in the menstrual flow that actually raise the stench. So how do you deal with this? Here are five top tips to maintain personal hygiene and smell fresh during your period.
- Take a bath regularly. Twice a day would be great or failing that at least once a day. If your flow is heavier than normal, you just may have to increase the frequency. Remember that to wash your delicate inner self where you’re bleeding from, you usually do not require more than water and your hands.
- Change your sanitary towels often. As soon as you notice they are significantly stained, please change them. This should be every 4-6 hours at the very maximum. Aim for the lower limit 🙂
- Deodorize. Carry a spare pack of deodorant and use that liberally whenever you have a pad change. Be sure not to attempt to smell like you soaked yourself in a bottle of perfume. It might also be a pointer that perhaps you’ve got something to hide.
- Scrub your hands thoroughly after a pad change. Observe all the rules of proper hand washing. This ensures that you get rid of all the bacteria and may have got on your hands and ensures that you keep the odour level down.
- Dispose of your sanitary towels properly. Do not flush them down the drain and if there is no trash can in the bathroom you are using to dispose of it, have a disposable ziplock bag to put it in and dispose it appropriately as soon as you can. Make sure that this is kept in a zipped up compartment of your bag.
Be confident and enjoy having your period. Remember that you can smell your genitals oftentimes because they are well, practically south of your nose…it doesn’t necessarily mean other people can smell them provided you’re obeying the rules of simple hygiene. And be sure to use an air freshener in the bathroom where you just changed. We don’t want to leave any tell-tale signs or smells now, do we?
The video below deals with some of the questions that young women ask about menstruation. Enjoy!
Have a great week ahead 🙂