World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2024 advocates for period friendly world

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | May 28, 2024 IST

Every woman deserves good health. Menstruation, a natural occurrence, poses unnecessary challenges due to social stigma and lack of awareness, particularly impacting young girls and women residing in rural India.


World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2024, observed on May 28, raises awareness and promotes good menstrual hygiene practices globally. It highlights the challenges women and girls face, especially in low-income countries with limited access to clean water, sanitation, and hygienic products.

 

Dr. Sujata Kar, a renowned gynaecologist in Bhubaneswar, emphasizes the importance of this year's theme, #PeriodFriendlyWorld. She states, "In a #PeriodFriendlyWorld, the stigma and taboos surrounding menstruation are history. Everyone should have access to the products, period education, and period-friendly infrastructure they need." 

Dr. Kar also discusses some risk factors and tips on menstrual health. 

 

Health problems associated with poor menstrual hygiene:

 

Poor menstrual hygiene can lead to several health issues. Not changing sanitary products regularly allows bacteria to grow, increasing the risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs) that affect the urethra, bladder, and kidneys. Infrequent changing of tampons or menstrual cups can enable bacteria to travel to the reproductive organs, causing pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), which can result in pain, fever, and infertility.

 

Additionally, using non-breathable pads or frequent douching creates a moist environment that promotes fungal growth, leading to yeast infections, which cause itching and irritation. Not changing pads or tampons often enough can also disrupt the vaginal bacterial balance, leading to bacterial vaginosis, resulting in itching, burning, and an unusual odor.

 

Reasons why prioritizing menstrual hygiene awareness is crucial:

 

Periods shouldn’t hold girls back from reaching their potential. Open communication and education about menstrual hygiene empower girls to manage their periods confidently and continue their education. Early education, starting as young as 8, prepares them for changes and dispels anxieties. Proper hygiene practices prevent health issues like UTIs, while discussing menstrual hygiene openly normalizes periods and encourages seeking information. Prioritizing awareness and access to clean toilets, sanitary disposal facilities, and affordable products creates a supportive environment for girls and women.

 

Tips for maintaining good menstrual hygiene include:

 

  • Reduce use of bubble baths, feminine hygiene products, or perfumed soaps or creams.
  • Wash your vulva with water daily, but avoid douching, as it can disrupt the natural balance of bacteria in your vagina.
  • Do not over wash the area; treat the skin in the genital area very gently.
  • Wipe your vulva area from front to back after using the toilet.
  • Use soft white unscented toilet paper.
  • Wear cotton underwear to allow your skin to breathe and use 100% cotton menstrual pads.
  • Change pads or tampons every 4 hours or more often if your flow is heavy.
  • Choose menstrual products that are unscented and hypoallergenic.

 

World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2024 strives to normalize menstruation through advocacy, education, and proactive measures. Its goal is to provide women and girls with the necessary resources and support to manage their periods with dignity and free from stigma. By working together, we can build a world where every woman and girl can thrive, irrespective of her menstrual cycle.


 

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