We have all had to face situations where we were made to feel embarrassed about our periods. Whether it was your local pharmacist wrapping a packet of pads in a newspaper or smuggling pads to your friends like drugs kyunki boys ne dekh liya to mazak udayenge.
Why are we as a society so terrified of periods? Hum chhote bacche hain kya!?
Not just that, period stigma brings with it a lot of period myths. Myths about women’s periods are way too many (and hundreds of variations of each) to tackle in a single blog, but we are trying to debunk the most popular myths about periods in India in this blog.
Let’s start this off with some of the most basic and fundamentally wrong myths about menstruation:
Period blood is dirty
How many of us have heard this more than once? Let’s count on our fingers. What’s that? Somebody ran out of fingers? Yeah, not surprising given the society we live in.
Period blood is different from blood from any other part of your body, but it isn’t something that can start a deadly pandemic simply by being touched. In fact, it is less blood and more of a mixture of the mucus lining, uterine tissue, bacteria, and a teeny-tiny bit of blood cells that make it appear red.
It’s not your body’s way of flushing out toxins, so a woman is not “ashudha” on her periods.
Periods are shameful
This is one of the most mind-boggling myths regarding periods. Why should a process that is so vital to human existence be looked down upon?
It is this shame and stigma that has turned periods into a humanitarian crisis. In 2014, the UN declared that period is not just a personal issue but a humanitarian crisis that we as citizens of the globe need to tackle.
We can do our part in stopping the stigma by speaking louder about women’s lack of access to period products, resources, and the support they need.
PMS is not real, women just want to throw tantrums
PMS or Premenstrual Syndrome brings a very real physical change in the bodies of women. During the days leading up to your periods, the estrogen levels fall quickly while the levels of progesterone increase rapidly. Estrogen is associated with feel-good hormones, while progesterone is linked to anger, fear, and anxiety.
PMS symptoms are not just limited to mood swings and anger; it also brings on cramps, diarrhea, headaches, bloating, and much more.
So, the next time you think your employee just wants a day off under the pretense of PMS cramps, think again.
Women are accelerating climate change by using sanitary pads
And you, my dear sir, couldn’t be more wrong. It’s not the women, who barely have any say in what period products are made available to them; it’s your coca-cola bottles and gutkha packets that are accelerating climate change. Did you know that more than 8 million tons of plastic bottles end up in our oceans every year? Or that an IIT Kharagpur study in July 2018 found more than one-fifth of the silt that clogs Delhi’s drains during the monsoon months to be made up of empty gutkha and pan masala packets.
And yet we only speak about how women should not be using sanitary pads. Just by guilting women into using organic sanitary pads made of 100% compostable and natural ingredients, you are not becoming our knight in shining armour. Read our piece about biodegradable sanitary pads here to know more about this issue.
Use RIO Sanitary Pads for the best period you have ever had. RIO Sanitary Pads are unapologetically made for women who choose to take care of themselves before anything else. RIO pads are:
Soaks all the blood and clots like a pro
Fits you snugly to prevent leaks
Is enriched with the goodness of Aloe Vera and jojoba
Has an antibacterial layer to prevent infections
Has Japanese SAP to turn the liquid into gel form
All RIO Pads are sulphur, paraben, and chemical fragrance-free.
Period pain is just like any other pain
You clearly haven’t experienced it ever before if you think so. Period pain for a lot of women is severe enough to affect their daily routines. They need to take days off work, skip school and stay curled up in their beds at home.
There’s even a scientific name for this condition called dysmenorrhea. The period cramps are so bad that your life gets put on hold. More than 20% of women who menstruate suffer from dysmenorrhea.
No workouts during periods!
There’s no scientific reason for you to skip out on your workouts during periods. In fact, a small study has shown that you burn more calories during the workout during your periods. Just be careful to lower the intensity of your workouts if you are already feeling fatigued.
Sex during your periods!? Haye Ram!
Some of y’all already ran away, terrified. But, sex during periods should not be any different than sex during other times, except for the fact that period blood creates an excellent lubricant, and everything is already prepared for action down there. Just make sure that your partner is comfortable with this idea and that you are using a place that can be easily cleaned up later or spread towels underneath to protect your bedding.
Some other lesser-known period myths we have heard are “women are always on that time of the month.” Can you imagine the misery of that? Thank heavens this is completely untrue.
How about this one? You give off a sexual whiff while on your periods, so, therefore, you should stay inside the house, lest the men are provoked. Yes, unless we are a particular breed of monkeys who need to communicate to their sexual counterparts that we are ready for penetration. Completely bogus!
So, don’t let these myths and facts about periods confound you or confuse you. Always know that every woman has a separate period, and you should find what works or does not work for you!
Well, this was it from us today! What are some of the most bizarre things you have heard about periods? Let us know in the comments section below.