Ahead of Menstrual Hygiene Day, May 28, Gauri Singhal busts some common myths about using a tampon and tells us why it is safe!
The world has been using tampons since the 1930s. However, in India, less than 1 per cent women use this convenient feminine hygiene solution.
A lot of women still feel reluctant when it comes to tampons or menstrual cups due to the perennial myths in their minds.
Simply put, a tampon is a mass of absorbent material, packed into a shape of a cylinder that goes into the vagina to absorb the menstrual blood and keep you stain-free.
In the wake of multiple rumours and misinformation about tampons, most women refrain from using them, whereas those who try them once never go back to other alternatives.
Therefore, it is important to have complete knowledge about tampons so that you can experience the multiple benefits that they have to offer.
Here’s looking at some of the common myths that women have about tampons:
Myth 1: A tampon can get lost inside
Usually, the vaginal canal is three to five inches long with only a limited space.
Once you insert a tampon into the vagina, there is no chance that it can travel anywhere else.
However, if it still goes rogue and you can’t pull it out, breathe and relax. There is nothing to worry about.
You can pull it out by yourself and while doing so, make sure your nails are not sharp and your hands are clean.
Once you are ready, sweep gently with your finger while keeping your pelvic muscles relaxed. If you still fail, seek the help of a gynaecologist.
Myth 2: It can make you lose your virginity
Many women think they lose their virginity when they start using a tampon, which is absolutely incorrect.
Tampons are specially designed to softly go into the vagina without breaking the hymen. And even if it breaks your hymen, it still doesn’t mean that the person has lost her virginity.
So, do not let this myth keep you from experiencing the comfortable and convenience of tampons.
Myth 3: Wearing tampons overnight is unsafe
One can absolutely wear a tampon overnight. It’s just advisable to always read and stick to the guidelines shown on the leaflet.
You can wear one for as long as eight hours.
Put it in right before you drop into the bed, and pull it out right after you wake up the next morning.
Myth 4: You must remove a tampon while peeing
A thought that often comes to mind while taking a pee.
Although it sounds weird to pee while having the tampon in, there is no such issue in doing so.
You must know that the vagina, GI tract and bladder all are separate and not connected.
A tampon, therefore, never stands in the way of urine or bowel movements.
Myth 5: It might fall out while walking or running
No, it won’t. If you’ve inserted it correctly your tampon will not fall out even if you’re sprinting at top speed.
It will stay in there keeping you comfortable and stain free, so stop worrying and start living your best life, even during periods.
Ignore these myths, and get on with using a tampon given its multifarious benefits.
For instance, it enables you to continue with physical activities like swimming, Yoga, running, et al even during periods. But before you use it, know how to do it right.
Steps to use a tampon the right way
1. Wash your hands with soap and water.
2. Pull the tear strip in the middle of the tampon.
3. Take out the string and give it a firm tug.
4. Sit or stand in a comfortable position
5. Use one hand to open the vaginal opening and the other to position the tampon in the right manner. Remember, do not hold it vertically.
6. Slowly, push the tampon all the way into the opening until only the strings hang outside.
7. Walk around to check whether it’s comfortably plugged in.
8. If you still feel uncomfortable, just adjust it further.
9. When it comes to removing it, pull the string and gently slide it out.
It is recommended to not wear a tampon for more than eight hours.
Depending on the menstrual flow one can rather change it after every four to six hours.
Most women in India are conditioned to use pads during their periods.
Let’s face it; they are irritating, rash-causing and not really great for the environment.
But, isn’t it awesome that we have so many options available today?
A tampon is one such option which ensures no stains, no odour and no rashes, even during heavier periods.
Gauri Singhal is founder and CEO of Visionaari, a parent company of FLOH tampons.