Pads are sometimes called sanitary pads/towels and they are narrow pieces of material that you stick to your underwear when you are on your period. Most of them have “wings” or flaps that fold over and stick to the sides of your underwear. The leaks help to avoid stains and leaks. While some pads are made from disposable materials in that they are only used once, some are made from materials that can be recycled – washed and recycled.
Young girls and especially those in their early teenage years often do not know what to do when they get their first period. Janet Mbugua, in her book My First Time, talked about this issue at length and thus my decision to touch on how to use sanitary towels properly.
Some people are at times torn on what to use when they are on their period as there are options like tampons, menstrual cups and period underwear. What you decide to use will be dependent on your preferences and what you feel most comfortable with. Some products like disposal pads and tampons can be easily accessed which makes it convenient for some people. Others feel that tampons and cups are invisible and cannot be felt hence a preference for them.
Activities like swimming will also dictate the kind of product to us. When it comes to saving money, reusable pads, cups and period underwear are the best.
You are advised to steer clear of scented pads or tampons, vaginal deodorant and douches as they can lead to irritations or infections like UTI. Also, make sure you change your tampon, menstrual cup, pad or period underwear often.
Using Sanitary Pads
When it comes to using pads, remember that they come in different sizes. The thin ones like panty liners can be used when you are spotting, the regular and thick ones for when you are bleeding heavily. You know your flow so choose your pad appropriately.
When wearing your pad, get the right fitting panties or underwear. Avoid g-strings and thongs especially when you have a heavy flow. I would advise a panty with a wide surface on where the pad will be.
Change your pad often or as soon as it is soaked with period blood.
When disposing used pads, make sure you wrap it in the wrapper or toilet paper and throw them in the trash as opposed to flushing them in the toilet.
Pad Rash During Your Period
Have you ever experienced a rash during your period and especially on the last day when the flow is very light? Period rashes can be agonizing and the trick to avoiding this discomfort and irritation is to practice proper hygiene. You can have a rash-free period with the following tips.
- Keep changing often
- Wear loose fitting clothes
- Keep yourself dry
- Stay clean
- Use ice packs to soothe the irritated skin around the vagina
- Avoid hygienic products – use warm water and avoid sprays, soaps or any other chemical-based product.
Maintain high levels of hygiene at all times and more so when you are on your period as one is more predisposed to infections more when they are menstruating.