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What is menstruation and how to use a swab?

How to use a swab?

Menstruation (from Lat. Mensis - month, menstruus - monthly), menstruation or regulation - part of the menstrual cycle of the body of women and females of some placental mammals (primates, bats and hopping animals evolutionarily close to humans).

During menstruation, the functional layer of the endometrium (uterine mucosa) is rejected, accompanied by bleeding. From the first day of menstruation, the menstrual cycle begins.

Menstrual blood does not clot and has a darker color than the blood circulating in the vessels. This is due to the presence of a set of enzymes in the menstrual blood.

Menstruation (and generally menstrual cycles) do not occur during pregnancy and lactation; the absence of menstruation at the expected time is a common symptom that allows you to suspect the presence of pregnancy.

Menstrual cycles

Menstruation usually occurs every month, but there are also non-standard periods of menstruation. Before puberty, during pregnancy and immediately after childbirth, there is no menstruation in menopause. Allocations immediately after birth are called lochia and last several weeks. Sometimes during breast-feeding, menstruation may be absent for some time and this method of pregnancy protection, such as the method of lactational amenorrhea, is built on this absence of menstruation.

The first appearance of menstruation (menarche) in a woman occurs at 12-14 years on average; (with a scatter from 9-11 years to 19-21 years). Menses in hot climates are shown between 11 and 15 years of life; in moderate - between 12 and 18 years and in the cold - between 13 and 21 years of life. Good nutrition and physical condition accelerate the onset of the menstrual period; and vice versa, malnutrition, excessive labor and poor physical condition slow its appearance. The age of the menarche reveals certain racial differences: for example, a number of studies have shown that menarche comes to Negroids earlier than the Caucasians living in the same socio-economic conditions.

After the first menstruation, the next may be after 2 or 3 months. Over time, the menstrual cycle is established and lasts 28 days, but the cycle duration from 21 to 35 days is normal. Only 13% of all women have a cycle of exactly 28 days. Menstruation lasts about 2-8 days. All discharge comes from the vagina, but there may be cases when endometrial cells get into other parts of the body, then bleeding will also come from them.

Menstrual blood

Menstrual blood refers to fluid discharge from the vagina during menstruation. Strictly speaking, menstrual fluid is a more correct term, since its composition, in addition to the blood itself, includes the mucous secretion of the glands of the cervix, the secretion of the glands of the vagina and endometrial tissue. The average volume of menstrual fluid released during one menstrual cycle is about 35 milliliters. However, the individual scatter lies in the range of 10 to 80 milliliters; this range is considered normal, more abundant (or, conversely, scarce) discharge may be a symptom of the disease. Menstrual fluid is reddish brown, slightly darker than venous blood.

The amount of iron lost with menstrual blood is relatively small for most women and cannot by itself cause symptoms of anemia. In one study, a group of women with symptoms of anemia were examined with an endoscope. It turned out that 86% of them actually suffered from various gastrointestinal diseases (such as gastritis or duodenal ulcers, which cause bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract); this diagnosis may not have been made due to the erroneous attribution of iron deficiency to menstrual blood loss. However, regular heavy menstrual bleeding in some cases can still lead to anemia.

General hygiene during menstruation

To maintain personal hygiene, teenage girls and women use panty liners and / or tampons inserted into the vagina. In both cases, the pad or swab tissue absorbs menstrual flow. In European countries, the USA and Canada, menstrual cups are becoming more and more popular as personal hygiene products, which are considered more sparing for women's health and less harmful to the environment than traditional products.

During menstruation, it is especially necessary to observe the rules of hygiene (daily shower, washing 2-3 times a day) due to the fact that bloody menstrual flow is a favorable environment for the multiplication of bacteria, including pathogenic ones. Also, you can not apply physical activity, you need mental peace.

Full dipping, and baths (both in fresh and salt water) are not recommended by medicine, it is recommended to use a shower for bathing. Alcohol and spicy foods are contraindicated, since the latter increase uterine bleeding due to a rush of blood to the abdominal organs.


During menstruation, a woman experiences great physical discomfort. Increased hormonal levels create emotional stress, irritation. The uterus during this period is very vulnerable to various infections. Therefore, during menstruation, sexual activity should be stopped.

Using swabs

When can I start using tampons?

There are no age restrictions. You can use tampons with the onset of your first menstruation. Start with the smallest ones and gradually choose the most convenient size for yourself.

Will they hurt the hymen?

The size and location of the swab in your body absolutely excludes the possibility of damage to the hymen. The hymen itself is a thin film covering the vagina, with an opening of a small diameter. A correctly inserted swab is located in the second third of your vagina and absolutely does not touch the film. In addition, the hymen is very elastic, and on "such" days it becomes even more supple. So don’t worry.

Does the size of the swab depend on height and weight?

No, it does not. The size of the swab should depend only on the volume of discharge. There is no connection either with the size of the internal organs or with the size of the girl.

Can a tampon get lost inside me?

The tampon cannot be "lost" in any way. He has nowhere to go. Moreover, with modern tampons the rope is sewn in such a way that it simply cannot come off. If you can’t immediately remove the swab, then either he has not yet managed to absorb enough secretions, or you are too tense muscles. Relax and try to do it again.

How often do tampons need to be changed?

As needed, about once every 4 hours. But never leave a swab in your body for more than 8 hours.

Is it possible to swim and take a shower without taking out a swab?

Of course. One of the indisputable advantages of tampons is precisely the fact that you can swim with them and feel as comfortable as possible. It is only better to replace the swab immediately after bathing.

Why do I need a swab with an applicator?

The applicator promotes hygienic insertion and proper placement of the tampon in the body. When entering the swab with the applicator, you do not touch it with your hands. It helps to correctly position the swab inside exactly at the depth to which it is necessary.