The Beach Is Your Friendjust Like The Pool
You can swim in the ocean just as freely as your backyard pool. Obviously, the amount of water in the ocean is going to dilute the chances of germs being spread through bodily fluids. And if youre worried about sharksdont be. A shark will sense menstrual blood in the water just like any other fluid, but youre just as likely to be bitten by a shark when youre on your period as when youre not . So noJaws wont be after you just because youre dealing with Auntie Flo.
Misconceptions About Menstruation And Swimming
Having your period can be a real pain sometimes, but it doesnt have to curtail your swimming. Misconceptions about periods and swimming abound, so lets take a look at some of the most common.
You cant swim with your period
This is a straight-up myth. You absolutely can swim while having your period. I successfully swam solo across the English Channel on the heaviest day of my flow in August 2009, in fact.
Most other female swimmers have similar stories. Fu Yuanhuis charming candor during a post-race interview poolside at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympicsshed gotten her period the night before the race and wasnt feeling greatis a great example of how this normal and natural bodily function doesnt have to hold you back from pursuing your aquatic goals.
The key to swimming while youre having your period is to make friends with tampons or another type internal menstruation product, such as a menstrual cup or disc, that can catch the flow.
Your period stops in water
Not quite. Although its true that the pressure of being immersed in water can slow the flow, your period will carry on to some degree, even if you cant see evidence of it in your swimsuit. This is why its important to always wear a tampon or use a menstrual cup to collect the blood and keep it from entering the pool.
You should wear a pad, even when swimming
You should avoid open water when you have your period because itll attract sharks
Everyone will know I have my period
Protection From Cramping And Bloating:
- Some girls suffer from intense abdominal cramps during their periods.
- Medical practitioners suggest that when your daughter experiences a menstrual cramp, restrict her from eating fried, unhealthy, and salty foods.
- When your teen experiences severe pain after a swimming session, she can take some Motrin or other pain relief medicines to get relief from the uncomfortable symptoms.
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Could I Get An Infection From Swimming On My Period
Swimming on your period is completely safe and wont increase your risk of getting a vaginal infection. However, pools with chlorine might irritate your vagina, which could cause you to develop a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis . To reduce your risk of this as much as you can, make sure you take a shower and change into clean, dry clothes as soon as you can to avoid prolonged exposure to the chemicals. If anything seems out of the ordinary for your body or if theres something youre concerned about, be sure to book an appointment to see your doctor.
Can I Delay My Period Until After I Go Swimming
Typical, combined hormonal contraceptive pills give you the option to skip or delay your period instead of taking the placebo pills or having a few days’ break , and this will delay your period until you finish your second pack.
“If you are on hormonal contraception such as the combined oral contraceptive pill, you can speak to your GP about taking two packets consecutively so you can skip the hormone-free interval where you would usually experience a withdrawal bleed,” explains Dr O’Neill. “If you’re taking the progesterone-only contraceptive pill, taking it ‘back to back’ will not delay your period. But, you can speak to your GP about switching to the combined oral contraceptive pill or taking another medication to delay your period.”
If youre not taking an oral contraceptive and want to delay your period, your doctor can prescribe you a pill called norethisterone to take three days before your period is due to start. You can take this for a maximum of 20 days and, once you finish it, your period should then arrive.
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The Sharks Will Come For You
Its an old wives tale that sharks will be able to sniff out your period blood and come after you. According to Steve Kajiura of Florida Atlantic Universitys Shark Lab the sharks dont even want our blood! What theyre interested in is detecting amino acids in the water, such as those excreted by parts of marine animals that sharks are actually evolved to eat.
So, can you swim with sharks on your period? Marie Levine, founder and executive director of the Shark Research Institute, told Mother Jones: Ive been diving for decades and even got my period while underwater with a school of hammerheads. The sharks were not interested and I had to fin like crazy to get close to them.
Okay, so you can swim on your period without fear of sharks or infections, its not unhygienic, no-one will be able to tell and your cramps may even be relieved! But
What Type Of Menstrual Protection Should You Choose
We dont recommend using a sanitary pad at the pool, and thats because it wont just absorb your blood itll soak up water too! The consequences? Its not just the fact that youll be inviting a bunch of pool chemicals into your body once your pads full of water, itll stop absorbing your flow. And that means more leakage with each and every kick and stroke.
For zero-stress swimming while youre on your period, your best bet is to choose from one of the following forms of protection:
- Menstrual cups: Being reusable, theyre perfect for strong flows.
- Tampons: They work well and are almost imperceptible, but you need to be aware of the potential dangers to your health.
- Menstrual bathing suits: Theyre made for swimming during menstruation without protection.
And dont forget, tampons and menstrual cups need to be changed regularly, even at the beach! Thats major.
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Benefits Of Swimming During Your Period
Not only is it safe to go swimming during your period, but it is also a good idea. Staying active has been shown to help ease the cramping and fatigue that some people experience during their monthly period.
Swimming, in particular, can be very helpful. Since your body is buoyant in the water, you may not notice the discomfort of the bloating that you may have during your period. Gentle nonswimming aquatic exercise has also been shown to be very helpful in managing painful periods.
Swimming or other aquatic exercises might be a great way to get pain and stress relief during your period. Even if you are simply wading at the beach, dont let your period stop you from enjoying a nice day in the sun. Just dont forget to pack a few extra tampons along with your sunscreen.
Is Swimming With Your Period Against Maori Culture
We loved the story of Wairaka, who was swimming at the mouth of the Tarawera river after the Mtaatua waka arrived in Bay of Plenty from Hawaiki. Her bleeding began, and when her father the Rangatira Toroa asked ‘whos godly blood’ it was, she replied and the place was named Te Awa a te Atua.
Being on your ikura is a special time in Maori culture, and menstural blood is tapu and special, given that it is linked to the story of Maui being crushed between the thighs of Hine Nui Te Po – “she then crushed him and made him the first menstruation to come into the world.” .
Because of this, menstrual blood is not supposed to flow into the ocean – so we believe it is culturally appropriate to retain your flow in your AWWA period bikini. We respect all viewpoints however and if swimming on your period is not for you then we totally respect that too.
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People Can Tell Youre On Your Period When Youre In The Pool
Periods are nothing to be ashamed of but even so, theres no reason why anyone should be able to tell that youre on your period while youre swimming. Nobody will be able to tell youre on your period at all unless you choose to tell them.
One benefit of using the Mooncup is that it is worn completely internally, which means you dont have to worry about a pesky tampon string making an unwelcome appearance either. The Mooncup also holds up to three times more than a regular tampon, so you are able to swim for longer!
What If You Swim On Your Period With No Tampon Or Cup
It is believed that the pressure created by water outside the body can slow down your menstrual flow, and some people find that their period stops completely while in water. You can test it out at home in the bath if youre curious! But for leak-proof protection, its always best to wear a menstrual cup, tampon or sponge. While period leaks at the beach wont attract sharks , it can be messy when you exit the water. And leaks or free bleeding at public pools are best avoided altogether for hygiene reasons.
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Can You Go Swimming On Your Period
It doesnt matter how many times youve had a period, you might go months years even wondering whether swimming on your period is okay Will I leak? Could I catch an infection? Will I get cramps? Will sharks know?
Its time for the myth to be debunked! You can swim on your period. And its super easy too.
Read on to find out our tips for swimming on your period.
Cramps Do They Get Worse While Swimming
Menstrual cramps can actually be relieved through low intensity exercises in swimming. The release of the endorphins hormones gives you the feeling of well being and also acts as a natural pain reliever. These hormones are usually less supplied during your time of the month. Premenstrual Syndrome can also be reduced through swimming. Oh! How well can I do without those mood swings. During my periods, I make it a point to swim as it helps me elevate my mood and Iâm happy, my stomach feels light and a lot less bloated, my body feels tight and great. Also, Iâd carry my bottle of water as itâs said that the body gets dehydrated faster while on periods.Water fun is for everyone, and there is absolutely no reason to miss out on it just because you have your period.. So, put the myths behind, wear on your swimming costume and practice your sport with ease and no stress!
So now you understand why Itâs totally fine to swim during your period. For some of us it’s a mental block that we’ve created for ourself but that still doesn’t change the fact that women are able to swim on any day of the month, with or without their periods. Don’t be afraid to get out there and enjoy the last few weeks of summer in the water!
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So Does That Mean I Don’t Need To Wear Tampons In Water
Even if your period tends to be light, tampons and menstrual cups can save you when you exit the water. The second you come out of the water your period will start flowing again, says Dr. Haughton. And then you could have a stain on your bathing suit.
They also come in handy if you tend to have a lot of blood clots .
Can You Swim While Wearing A Pad
Disposable and reusable pads are a big no-no if youre planning a dip in the water. Because they are worn outside the body to absorb your flow, swimming with a pad in your swimsuit will lead to major leaks and leave you with a heavy, waterlogged pad. Not ideal! Choose a period product that is worn internally instead, like a menstrual cup, menstrual disc, tampon or menstrual sponge.
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In Other Words: You Still Need Protection To Prevent Leakage
Just because your period isnt quite as active while youre in the water doesnt mean its going to stop completely especially if youre frequently moving in and out of the water.
If youre worried about someone noticing that youre on your period , try not to stress. You definitely dont have to avoid the water altogether.
Can You Swim With A Menstrual Sponge
Absolutely! If soggy tampons strings are not your thing but you prefer disposable period products, try a menstrual sponge like the Beppy Sponge instead. Beppy Sponges come in two varieties and are worn inside the body below your cervix to absorb your flow, similar to a tampon. Theyre great to wear during sports, while swimming and can even be worn during sex. Although they dont have a string, Beppy Sponges are easy to remove and come individually wrapped for convenience.
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How Do I Tell My Mom Or Dad That I Got My First Period
It’s normal to feel a little shy about sharing this bit of news. In some families, talking about body stuff might seem like no big deal. With this kind of family, they might take you out to dinner to celebrate your period!
Other families might be more private, so it can be hard to know exactly what to say or whom to tell.
But this news needs to be shared, at least with one grown-up in the family. You might just pull the person aside and say it clearly, like this: “I got my first period today. Do you think you can help me get some supplies?”
If brothers and sisters find out, they might tease you a bit. Just tell them that it means you’re getting older.
You Will Not Get Eaten By Sharks Because Of Your Period
Thanks to some popular films like Jaws, lots of people are afraid of sharks while swimming in the ocean. Some people with periods are told not to swim in the ocean during their periods because period blood might attract sharks . There are no recorded cases of sharks attacking someone on their period. According to the International Shark Attack File, many people safely dive while menstruating. More research is needed, but they havenât seen any pattern of increased attacks on menstruating divers. Marie Levine, Founder and Executive Director of The Shark Research Institute has been diving for decades without any problem. She told Mother Jones, â even got my period while underwater with a school of hammerheadsâthe sharks were not interested.â
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