Alternate Between Sanitary Napkins and Tampons, And Other Best Practices For Your Period - Cosmopolitan Sri Lanka

Alternate Between Sanitary Napkins and Tampons, And Other Best Practices For Your Period

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Keep in mind these ‘best practices’ when Aunt Flo comes to town, because there are actually strategies to taking care of yourself. The key: switch it up, ladies.

Move between pads and tampons to give both your inner and outer vaginal surfaces some relief. Switching to a tampon after a few days of using sanitary napkins will give your outer skin room to breathe; and switching to a pad after a few tampon uses, gives your inner vaginal wall a break. A healthy balance is a great idea!

Sanitary napkins should be changed once every 6 hours at the maximum. All that sweat and moisture is a breeding ground for bacteria, not to mention chafing. Your tampon should be changed every 4-8 hours, depending on your flow, and never kept in longer than 8 hours. Set alarms on your phone to make sure your timing’s impeccable.

You can sleep with your tampon, but it should be inserted right before you go to bed, and changed the minute you wake up. With less urgency, the same principle applies for sanitary napkins. Basically, on Shark Week, this takes priority over your toner.

With pads, the level of absorbency you use doesn’t have severe consequences. But wearing an overnight on the last day can cause uncomfortable dryness and irritation. Similarly, wearing a regular on day two may mean you rushing to the ladies’ room more often than required. It’s a comfort thing, but getting the consistency right can allow you to go on with your day (and life) with minimal disruption.

If you use tampons, use the lowest absorbency necessary. With a super easy flow, do not use a large-size tampon—use a small, light one, or a panty liner, instead. Tampon levels are there for a reason. “Using an absorbency inconsistent with your flow can be another trigger of TSS,” says Dr. Nilani Kaluarachi, MB ChB (UK), D.R.C.O.G (UK), DFFP (UK). “Always stick to the lowest level possible that will still ensure adequate absorbency.” This means that if you’re bleeding super heavily, it’s fine to use a heavy absorbency tampon because it’s necessary for your flow. But it’s not cool to insert a heavy absorbency tampon in anticipation of the first day of your period, when flow is typically low.

 

A version of this article appeared as “Tamp-ering” in our July 2016 edition. For more health tips, subscribe now!

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