There many options for sanitary products to use when you have your period. They each differ in price, sustainability and size. The best way to find what’s right for you is to choose what feels feels most comfortable.
Pads are pieces of absorbent material that you stick to the inside of your underwear. Some have extra material on the sides (called “wings”) that fold over the edges of your underwear to better hold the pad in place and prevent leakage. Pads are disposable and should be changed every 3 to 4 hours.
Tampons are also made up of absorbent material, but in the form of a small cylinder shape that is inserted inside the vagina. They are also disposable and should be changed every 3-4 hours and not be worn while you sleep. Tampons are ideal if you want to go swimming or play sports, but again it’s best to choose whichever product you feel most comfortable in.
Cloth pads are similar to pads but they can be washed and reused, meaning they’re better for the environment. To wash your cloth pad rinse it in cold water to remove as much blood as possible, then add it to your regular laundry.
A menstrual cup is a small, flexible cup is made of silicone or latex rubber. Instead of absorbing your period blood, like a tampon or pad, it catches and collects it. After inserting the cup it rests against the walls of your vagina, forming a seal to prevent leaks so the blood can simply drip into the cup. They only need to be emptied twice a day (depending on how heavy your period is) and can be worn while you sleep. Most are reusable so you can clean them and use them again!
Similar to a tampon, a sponge is inserted inside the vagina to absorb the blood. They are made from natural sea sponge and most last about 6 months. They need to be rinsed out about every 3 hours and thoroughly cleaned, dried, and properly stored at the end of each menstrual cycle.
It’s a good idea to take care and take it easy while on your period. It’s completely normal to feel tired, sensitive or emotional while on your period so remember to take time to yourself to relax. If you get painful periods there are a few things that can help:
If your period pain is really bad, and it stops you from being able to do things, it might be a good idea to go visit your doctor. Read this article to learn more about going to the doctor on your own.