Menstruation is a natural process of a woman's body that prepares the female reproductive system to give birth to. This is also commonly known as period and natural vaginal bleeding occurs as a part women’s’ monthly cycle. It happens because the body gets prepared to produce but when it does not take place, the lining of the uterus sheds, breaking down into blood. This usually happen once a month during the reproductive years, except during pregnancy. Period blood is partly blood and partly tissue from inside the uterus. It passes out of the body through the vagina.
Although it is a natural process of reproduction there are numerous unnatural myths attached to it. In urban as well rural areas of our country, there are taboos associated with menstruation that only create more problems for women. In conservative and unscientific societies, women are told what to eat, how to sleep, how to walk, and live during their menstrual cycle. Women in our society are forced to follow some strange restrictions which are unjustified.
On this Menstrual Hygiene Day, we can discuss a few myths related to menstruation :
1 Myth: A woman is impure during her menstrual cycle. Thus, cannot enter the kitchen and religious places.
Fact: Period blood is considered dirty or impure. However, most people fail to realize that menstrual blood is a natural element of the female reproductive system, and it circulates through the body just like other blood. Women shed blood and tissue from inside the uterus during their period, and the colour range can range from light red to dark brown. In addition, the clumping and colour of period blood also have their scientific explanations.
Also read: 7 menstrual hygiene tips for women
2 Myth: Women should not wash their hair during Periods
Fact: There is no connection between periods and washing hair. Scientifically, your body is releasing heat during menstruation. So, lukewarm water would be advisable for hair washing. You should not hamper your basic hygiene simply because you are on your period. In fact, a warm bath can soothe painful cramps.
3 Myth: Missing periods does not always mean that you're pregnant
Fact: Many times, women and girls can miss or have irregular periods without being pregnant. This can be due to disorders such as PCOD and PCOS. In such cases, consultation with a certified gynaecologist is necessary. Moreover, hormonal imbalance and stress can also lead to missed or irregular periods.
4 Myth: You cannot do any physical activity during periods
Fact: Many health websites suggest that light exercise and yoga can reduce bloating, calm your mind and reduce cramps. Certain yoga positions may help ease cramps and help to maintain a sound body. Walking is considered the zero budget and less worry exercise. You can talk to a fitness expert for specifics.
5 Myth: You should be discreet about your periods
Fact: Just like menstruation is natural, there is nothing unnatural about talking about it. An increased dialogue will help create more awareness around menstrual hygiene. Men and women must rise above these stigmas to create an atmosphere where women can freely voice their issues and buy tampons and sanitary napkins without any shame.