Menstrual myths are in the air for ages. Women and teenage girls are influenced by some of the myths and stay away from the truth. Even today, negative references and misunderstandings of menstruation and cycles keep women in the loop of illusory fears and taboos.
The menstrual cycle is just the normal functioning of the reproductive system of a woman. She has every right to feel liberated irrespective of her periods. You need not cut yourself out dreading age-old and illogical phrases.
Most menstrual myths are derived from cultural and religious credentials and hence create anxiousness in girls. Just work out your logic and you will be able to decide for yourself what is right and what is not.
Let us have a look at the popular myths and incorrect conventions or beliefs, of which so many have been passed on for centuries.
Do not practice yoga during periods
- You need not absolutely discard yoga during periods.
- In fact, yoga is one of the most relaxing and rejuvenating techniques that calm your body during agonizing periods.
- Gentle asanas (poses) and pranayama (breathing techniques) enhances blood circulation, reduces cramps and distressing symptoms. It also helps in alleviating stress and anxiety that breaks period cycles and instigates pain.
- All you need to do is skip inversions and poses that strain your abdomen.
You can’t get pregnant during your periods
- This is not true. Women carry on with unprotected sex believing this myth.
- Though the probability is low, it is proven that there are chances for a woman to conceive even while she menstruates.
- Women who have shorter menstrual cycle ovulate early. And therefore the possibility of pregnancy can’t be discarded. It is always safe to use condoms or take contraceptives to avoid undesired pregnancy.
You shouldn’t have sex during periods
- There is nothing wrong with having sexual intercourse while you are menstruating.
- It is observed that having sex during periods has in fact helped women get over cramps and other discomforts associated with periods. But a woman is more prone to infections and STDs during this time, as her vaginal tract is sensitive and weekly defended.
- All you need to do is have safe sex. Also be sure to take precautions to not create a mess.
There is nothing called Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) – it is all in your mind
- Premenstrual Syndrome is a set of emotional and physical symptoms that precede periods by a week or two.
- It is initiated by hormonal fluctuations that occur during menstrual cycle. Usually one experiences nausea, headache, acne breakouts, fatigue, diarrhea, tender breasts, bloating, backache, body pain, irritability, mood swings, and anxiety among other symptoms.
- PMS varies from women to women; and they are not in your mind but the result of changes happening in your body. Next time somebody tells you the “all in your mind” excuse, you can stay with the fact.
Virgins can’t use tampons
- Absolutely not! If you are aged enough to get menarche you are old enough to use a tampon.
- The statement may have arisen because virgin women would have tighter vaginal openings which could make it difficult to insert a tampon. You can try a tampon, but do so gently.
- Get used to tampons and you need not skip a pool party the next time.
You shouldn’t swim when you have periods
- This again is probably a fragment of the previously discussed myth.
- Tampons were introduced recently and it is absolutely safe to use them in water or while you swim.
- Pads get soaked in water, which is what one worries about.
- Swimming doesn’t harm your body or obstruct periods in any way. It can sometimes ease your menstrual cramps.
- Be confident and carry on with your swimming classes.
Menstrual blood is dirty blood
- Menstrual blood is not very different from normal blood.
- It consists of blood, uterus lining, fragments of egg and some secretions which together make it denser. But you need not be disgusted or feel gross about menstrual blood.
- Besides, menstrual blood serves as the nutritional channel for a fetus in the womb.
You should be resting when you have periods
- If your periods don’t give you troubles like pain, discomfort or fatigue, you can go ahead with all your routine activities.
- Being an active personality and following a fitness regime can actually deal with menstrual cramps effectively. Experts now advice teenagers and women to work out in order to avoid problems associated with periods.
- If you feel very uncomfortable during periods, there could be an underlying medical condition or lack of nutrition which causes distress. It is important to visit a doctor and get it diagnosed rather than rest throughout it.
You may want to laugh off at the next six weirdest menstrual myths!
Women are dirty and untouchable when menstruating
- Though it is a very absurd assertion, it was believed in many cultures for a really long time.
- Women were made to stay in a hut or room outside the house during menstruation. They were not allowed to touch anyone or cook anything. During this time of the month, they were warded off from attending auspicious events and entering places of worship.
- Bits and pieces of these theories are still followed by women of this century as well.
If you go for a swim, sharks would attack you. Just want to take a stroll by the wood side? Bears would attack you.
- This is another bizarre piece of information that puzzles women even today.
- The basis was probably to prevent women from taking a swim or loafing around during their periods. And the best method was to induce fear.
- Surprisingly, the fear seems to be effective till date.
If you sleep next to other women during periods, it will spread to them as well
- First of all, periods are neither a disease nor contagious.
- It is noticed that women who live together or spend a lot of time with each other, have their cycles synced over time. This is scientifically understood to be the responsibility of pheromones.
- Syncing periods are observed a lot but that doesn’t mean one woman’s period is “passed on” to another.
When a woman menstruates, she is possessed by demons
- Women seem to get attacked by great many things during menstruation.
- Someone might have had to face severe mood swings to create the impression of being possessed.
- Kindly do not fall for such baseless opinions.
If a woman happens to cross the menstrual blood of another woman, she could turn infertile.
- Well, it doesn’t work that way. It has been tried numerous times and proved wrong with great success.
- Superstitions too need to have a limit.
Women shouldn’t take bath during periods
- Old wives tales are never ending.
- On the contrary, bathe at least once every day and keep yourself as clean as possible. Trust me; you wouldn’t want bad odor following you everywhere.
Try out a hot-water bath if you have cramps; it helps many women in easing menstrual pain.
Here! We have triumphantly busted 13 superstitions that can now be dumped and trashed.