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Reproductive Health; Menstrual Hygiene for Teens.

Reproductive health is characterized by complete physical, mental, and social well-being in all matters relating to the reproductive system and its functions. A crucial element of reproductive health is the emphasis on menstrual hygiene to maintain social well-being.

What is menstrual hygiene?
Menstrual hygiene involves cleaning oneself and ensuring proper disposal of used menstrual products.

Menstruation which is commonly referred to as a ‘period’ is a normal biological occurrence that women worldwide experience every month. A period occurs when the uterus sheds blood and tissue from the uterine lining, which exits the body through the vagina. As such, it necessitates the need for women to utilise menstrual hygiene products on a monthly basis to keep themselves and their environment clean.

Good menstrual health and hygiene habits prevent infections, reduce bad odour and assist a person to stay comfortable during the period.

To absorb or collect blood during your period, you can choose numerous types of menstrual products including sanitary pads, tampons, menstrual cups, discs, and period underwear.

When handling menstrual products, ensure that you:

  • Wash your hands before and after using the lavatory and before using a menstrual product.
  • Wash the outside of your vagina (vulva) and bottom every day. When you go to the bathroom, wipe from the front of your body toward the back, not the other way. Use only water to rinse your vulva. The vagina is a self-cleaning organ.
  • Discard used disposable menstrual products properly: wrap them with toilet paper, a tissue, or other material and then toss in a trash bin. Do not flush menstrual products down the toilet.
  • Sanitary pads: Change sanitary pads every few hours, no matter how light the flow. Change them more frequently if your period is heavy.
  • Tampons: Change tampons every 4 to 8 hours
  • Do not wear a single tampon for more than 8 hours at a time.
    • Use the lowest-absorbency tampon needed. If you can wear one tampon for up to 8 hours without changing, the absorbency may be too high.
  • Menstrual cups: Clean cups every day after use. Sanitise menstrual cups after your period is over by rinsing them thoroughly and then placing them in boiling water for one to two minutes.
  • Period underwear: These can be hand washed with detergent and water. Ensure that the period  underwear is hung under sunlight and well aerated.

Get an annual comprehensive check-up that includes a pap smear, pelvic exam, and breast examination to ensure excellent reproductive health because they can detect early signs of cancer or other illnesses.

Skills Maishani Teen and Youth programs focus on instilling skills on sexual & reproductive health, safety (online and offline), financial literacy and legal life skills.

As such, we have developed a guiding booklet for first time adolescents to assist them in understanding the new biological changes they are experiencing.

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