Periods In A Pandemic
Periods don't stop in a Pandemic. In recognition of Menstrual Hygiene Day, we are highlighting 9 things you should know about Periods during a Pandemic.
Shout out to Unicef for putting this list together.
1. Menstruation is not a sign of COVID-19
Having periods is healthy and normal. It is not a sign of illness.
2. Menstrual supplies are essential items
Essential hygiene products are a priority for the health, dignity and welfare of all people who menstruate.
3. People in health care facilities do not have easy access to menstrual hygiene products
Staff need to be trained to sensitively meet the needs of their patients.
4. Health workers, like everyone else, need menstrual health supplies
Putting on and removing PPE prevents the quick changing of menstrual hygiene materials, leading women to bleed into protective suits, suppress menstruation through the use of oral contraceptive pills, or potentially miss days of work.
5. Poverty makes it harder to access menstrual hygiene supplies and care
There have even been reports of women forced to prioritize food and water over personal care items. Check out our blog post on period inequity
6. COVID-19 threatens the rights and health of vulnerable people who menstruate
Gender inequality, extreme poverty, humanitarian crises and harmful traditions can turn periods into a time of deprivation and stigma.
7. Preventing COVID-19 goes hand-in-hand with good menstrual hygiene
Providing water, sanitation and hygiene services to people in displacement camps, informal settlements and impoverished communities contributes to the larger pandemic response.
8. Information about menstrual health and hygiene is hard to come by in the pandemic
As education and health services have been disrupted, so has the flow of basic information about menstrual health and hygiene.
9. Harmful menstruation traditions leave people vulnerable to the pandemic
Some traditions hold that menstruating people should be sent to a ‘menstrual hut’, or to a relative’s home, which could affect a menstruating person’s ability to engage in physical distancing. Check out or blog post regarding menstrual traditions.