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  • Writer's pictureShruti GOCHHWAL

Menstrual Health and Hygiene and How important is it?

Periods are still considered to be a taboo in India. With only 12 % of Indian women using sanitary pads, menstruation has become an elusive topic in India. Women in India are deprived of proper menstrual hygiene management due to lack of awareness and socio-cultural beliefs.

Menstrual Hygiene Management – How Important Is It?

Menstrual hygiene is a crucial and integral part in every woman’s life and it’s a fundamental right of her’s, to be able to manage her menstruation hygienically. Poverty, gender inequality and suppressive conditioning of women may inhibit them from using proper menstrual hygiene products.

Menstrual Hygiene Management is managing cleanliness during periods by using products that help soak menstrual discharge by women. It also involves changing these products in privacy as required, with proper access to water, soap and disposal methods. Menstrual hygiene practices include:

  1. Changing of pads every 4 hours

  2. Washing and sun-drying reusable sanitary towels

  3. Cleaning the area properly after changing pads

  4. Washing your hands with soap and water after changing pads.

If hygienic practices are not followed during menstruation, there are chances of getting Urogenital tract infection, which increases during later stages.

5 Health Risks That Can Result from Poor Menstrual Hygiene

  1. Infection of Reproductive Tract: Contaminated products when used as sanitary napkins can alter the vaginal PH and allows breeding for several bacteria like  Staphylococcus, Salmonella, and E. coli. These pathogens directly enter into the bloodstream and can cause sepsis and related complications.

  2. Urinary Tract Infection: This is one of the most common diseases that occur due to poor menstrual hygiene. The bacteria that cause UTI can irritate the mucosal region of the urinary tract and cause infection.

  3. Yeast Infections: Candida albicans caused by yeasts infects the urinary and reproductive tract when improper menstrual hygiene is followed.

  4. Hepatitis B Infection: Hepatitis B is a serious infection of the liver which is easily transmitted through bodily fluids, including menstrual discharge.

  5. Increased Risk of Cervical Cancer: Lack of menstrual hygiene in some women may make them vulnerable to Cervical cancer.

Lack of menstrual hygiene due to ignorance makes women suffer from various health risks. Raising awareness on menstruation and use of hygienic products can help avoid health risks in periods.

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