The rumors and myths are endless about women’s period and menstruation cycles. Let’s debunk the top 5 period myths and set the record straight.
1. You can’t get pregnant on your period. FALSE.
Although extremely unlikely, women can get pregnant on their periods. Sperm can live up to 5 days in the female reproductive system so while the timing is not ideal for fertilization there is a small window of chance that you can get pregnant if practicing unproductected sex on your cycle. If you’re not actively trying to get pregnant, why chance it?
2. The pain of your period is ‘just like’ anything you’ve experienced. FALSE.
Did you know excessive period pain has its own name? #Menstruation occurs when the uterus sheds its lining once a month. Some pain, cramping, and discomfort during menstrual periods is normal. Excessive pain that causes you to miss work or school is not.
Painful menstruation is also called dysmenorrhea. There are two types of dysmenorrhea: primary and secondary.Primary dysmenorrhea occurs in people who experience pain before and during menstruation. If you’ve had normal periods that become painful later in life, it may be secondary dysmenorrhea
3. Exercising during your period can cause damage to your uterus. FALSE.
Dating back years ago - this myth was centered around exercise causing damage to the womb while on your period. Contrary to this myth, it has been proven that exercise actually helps women on their period. Consistently keeping to your routine not only can shorten the length of your period but it has been shown to decrease pain, lessen symptoms, combat extreme fatigue and much more.
4. If your period is longer or shorter than exactly one week, something is wrong. FALSE.
Every woman is different and the myth that your period should be one full week, start to finish, is usually not the case. The length of your period is determined by a lot of factors ranging from your exercise schedule to your eating habits. For the average woman, a period lasts around 5 days and can occur every 4 to 5 weeks.
5. Tampons are the only option to deal with your period. FALSE.
We’ve come a long way in the 20th century on managing our periods. There are organic tampons like (LOLA, CORA, and Honest) that have changed the marketplace and women's health landscape. There are pads and ‘period underwear’ like Thinx. Menstrual cups are gaining popularity in recent years too. Try a method that works with your lifestyle and know that you’re not alone if you don’t just use tampons.