How Does A Tampon Work
Unlike pads, which catch blood after it comes out of the vagina, a tampon is put in the vagina. It’s made of soft material with a string for easy removal. The opening to the vagina is between the urethra and the anus .
It may take a little time to get the hang of using tampons. Tampon applicators can be plastic or cardboard, and you can use whichever one you like better. Inside each box, there’s an instruction booklet that will tell you how to insert a tampon.
Tampons come in different absorbencies. Try starting with regular and then switching if you need to. You should change your tampon every 4 to 8 hours or when it’s filled with blood.
If a tampon ever does feel “stuck,” it’s only temporary. It can’t get lost inside you because there’s no way out except through the vagina. Relax and wait a few minutes, and then you should be able to get the tampon out.
What Are My Best Options When I Need To Go Swimming During My Periods
With my swimming costume on, I tried a number of options, and well, most of it worked. During heavy flow, or the first 2 days of my periods, I used a tampon, or a menstrual cup and these were the best options as I went in and out of water. If I planned to just sit by the pool, a pad in my swimming costume with shorts over it worked just fine. However, if you do plan to go into the pool, a pad is not a great idea as it could get soggy and fall apart.
You Cant Get Pregnant When You Have Your Period
While uncommon, it *can* happen. Thanks to health class, you probably know that when you have your period, you arent ovulating, so you might think that means you wouldnt be able to get pregnant. But thats actually not the case.
Heres the deal: Your ovulation and your menstrual cycle can be unpredictable, and ovulation can happen before, during, and after the bleeding phase, especially if your period is irregular. You can also bleed even if youre not having your periodits called spotting and when it happens, it can seem like your period. Even if youre not ovulating when you have sex, sperm can live in your vagina for up to five days, so if an egg is released during that time, it can be fertilized. Bottom line: You can get pregnant any time you have sex, period or no period. Thats why its important to still use birth control and condoms when having sex during your period both to prevent pregnancy and to protect against STDs.
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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 I Go Swimming During My Period
Swimming during your period isn’t a problem. However, you will want to use a tampon when swimming so you don’t bleed on your swimsuit. Pads won’t work and will just fill with water. The tampon won’t fall out if it is inserted correctly, so go ahead and make a splash!
Tampons also can be helpful for girls who exercise or play sports during their periods. Pads will work, but can feel uncomfortable during sports.
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Best Tampons For Swimming
Tampons are specifically designed to absorb period flow before it can leave your body, which makes them one of the best products to use for swimming on your period. You wonât have to worry about signs of your period showing in the water. Pads are made to absorb period flow too, but as theyâre worn outside of the body â and would be great at absorbing all that pool water too â youâd end up with a soggy bottom and looking like you were wearing a nappy . So, do yourself a favour and leave the pads at home. All Tampax tampons can be worn while swimming in any kind of water, and only Tampax tampons have a LeakGuard Braid to help stop leaks before they happen â giving you all-day comfort and protection for up to eight hours.
Have a look at how to insertâ¯a tampon and practice a few times before you head into the water â especially if using a tampon is new to you. Be sure to tuck the string into the lining of your swimming costume before you leave the bathroom, and you should be good to go.
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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What If You Leak Blood Into The Water Anyways
If you’re concerned about seeing your blood in the water due to a leak, put your mind at rest it should be diluted pretty quickly.
“Any small amount of blood that were to get into the water would either be neutralized by chemical treatment of the water or vastly diluted by a large body of natural water ,” says Meyers.
Another concern that may come to mind when swimming with your period, especially if you’re swimming in the ocean or another large body of water, is sharks. If you’re concerned that sharks will swarm around you, it likely won’t happen.
“There is no data that shark attacks increase while a woman is on her period,” says Millheiser.
Your regular flow shouldn’t prevent you from swimming. In fact, it can even benefit your body. “Swimming and exercise may be helpful for period cramps as well,” says Ho. Just make sure that your cramps aren’t too bad when you first get in the water and that you can swim comfortably without much pain.
Can Swimming Make My Cramps Worse
Low intensity exercise can actually help relieve your menstrual cramps, as your body releases endorphins when you exercise which act as natural painkillers. “It can be very beneficial to move your body and exercise by swimming whilst on your period,” points out Dr Welsh.
In fact, research has shown that regular physical exercise may even be effective in preventing premenstrual syndrome .
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Myth : Your Period Stops When Youre Submerged
Maybe youve heard something along these lines: your period takes a time out when you come into contact with water. Maybe youve even noticed your menstrual flow stops when you take a bath. Thing is, thats not actually true. Water doesnt really give you a timeout. Whats going on is water pressure temporarily and partially slows your flow, but that doesnt mean it ever fully stops.
Does Water Pressure Stop My Period When I Swim
Itâs complicated. Essentially, it may appear as though youâve stopped bleeding when you swim, but itâs actually physics at work. Because water creates more resistance than air, when youâre swimming in a pool, lake, ocean, or even just lying in the bath, there is pressure against the opening of your vagina that can temporarily prevent blood from coming out. Swimming or being in water does not stop your period altogether â once you exit the water, the pressure is gone and youâll likely start bleeding again.
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Myth : You Cant Swim During Menstruation Without Protection
When your flows a little weaker, say near the end of your period or when youre swimming in open water that quickly dilutes your flow, swimming without protection is entirely feasible and reasonable. Some of us practice instinctive free flow, which is all about willfully controlling your flow. Awesome, right? Never heard of it? Trust us. You gotta give it a try!
Ask Your Doctor About Hormonal Medication
If you’re not on hormonal birth control, you may be able to delay your period with hormonal medication containing norethindrone, which is a form of the hormone progesterone, the same active ingredient in hormonal birth control.
You need to start taking this medication a few days before the start of your period for it to delay your period. Note that you will probably get your period within a day or two of stopping it.
A small 2019 study found that people who took norethindrone to delay their period were less likely to experience irregular bleeding than those who tried to delay it with birth control pills. However, the study also found that those who took norethindrone were more likely to gain weight.
Visit your doctor for a prescription and check whether this option is suitable for you.
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Does Swimming During Your Period Make You Shark Bait
News that a great white shark is making its way up the east coast brings up a question that many of us have wondered about since puberty: Are sharks more likely to attack women during their period?
A great white shark swam eerily close to the Jersey Shore on Sundayless than half a mile away before making its way out to sea again.
The shark, dubbed is now heading up the east coast toward Long Island, according to the non-profit group OCEARCH that’s tracking her route.
With beach season approaching, Mary Lees close coast encounter brings up a question that many of us have wonderedand potentially worried aboutsince puberty: Does swimming during your period make you shark bait?
Dont turn down a chance to snorkel or stand up paddleboard just yet, because in short, the answer is no.
Reason being: The evidence out there hasn’t shown a pattern of more attacks on menstruating women. “As someone who studies shark attacks, this is at the bottom of my list of worries,” George H. Burgess, director of the Florida Program for Shark Research told Health.
On top of that, only three people worldwide died from shark attacks last yearso the chance of even getting in a precarious shark situation in the first place is super slim .
So bottom line: Don’t let the fact that you have your period come in the way of you and your aquatic activities.
The Classic Solution: Wear A Tampon
Usually, we are first taught to use pads when we first get our periods. Having used pads for many years, many of us take a while to try out tampons, if ever at all.
Using a pad on a swim is an absolutely terrible idea, unless your flow is extremely light and you just need a pantyliner in case. Pads are made to absorb liquid your menstrual blood and its bloody good at doing that . So when you go inside a pool with a pad, its going to absorb all the pool water it can until the point of saturation, and it wont be able to absorb any of your menstrual blood if it comes out. In the end, its the same as wearing no pad at all!
Using a tampon protects you from leakage because your blood is all absorbed inside. Very little water is able to go inside your tampon too, so this is a simple and common solution to swimming while on your period.
Some people worry that the tampon string may become visible, so be careful to tuck it in properly within your swimsuit bottom. You could wear swimming shorts instead to feel safer!
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Period Pads For Swimming
If menstrual cups arent an option, you may still be wondering how to swim on your period without a tampon.
Getting into the water with a pad is a bit trickier when compared to using tampons or a menstrual cup. Pads are super absorbent if they come into contact with water, they will become useless.
When disposable pads get wet, they can slip out from under your swimsuit.
A pad without wings will be the most discrete, as it wont peek out from your clothes. Instead of getting your whole body wet, you may decide to sit at the edge of the pool with your feet dangling in the water. If youre at the beach, you can wade through the water, which will keep your pad dry.
If you do choose to get in the water, you can wear dark-colored shorts over your swim bottoms. This will make the pad less obtrusive and hide any leakage.
Can I Catch An Infection From Swimming During My Period
“Swimming in polluted water can increase the risk of experiencing skin irritation and getting a Urinary Tract Infection ,” points out Dr O’Neill. “Wearing a wet bathing suit for a long time after you are done with your swim can also increase the likelihood of irritation and infection, however these risks are not exclusive to when you are on your period.”
She adds: “It is always recommended to have a shower and change into clean, dry clothes after you have been swimming to prevent the above from happening.”
The most common complaints from swimming in contaminated water often include skin infections and stomach illnesses .
You can always check with the regional health authority for information on the water quality at your favourite swimming spot, if youre worried.
In some cases, the chlorine in swimming pools can irritate the vulva and vagina, which can leave you at risk of developing a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis . If this happens, dont panic, just have a shower immediately after swimming in chlorinated pools, and dont sit around in your wet swimwear.
“If you have any unusual itching, burning or discharge that persists after your swim, consider speaking with your doctor,” reminds Dr O’Neill.
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