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Five ways to dispose of feminine hygiene products

Readers Lounge - By Esther Muchene | March 31st 2020 at 12:00:00 GMT +0300
Poor disposal of sanitary products could pose a health risk (Photo: Shutterstock)

Feminine hygiene products include vaginal washes, sanitary products, wipes, shaving blades, just to name a few. And many of them are packaged in a variety of containers like plastic or glass.

Practicing safe disposal is both ethical and hygienic. It’s also key because poor disposal could pose a serious health risk for you and others.

So how exactly can you safely dispose of these products when you’re done using them? This is how.

1. Put them in the bin

It’s everyone’s duty to ensure they put their waste in bins. You should never dump them in the streets, in a water body or ditch or anywhere they don’t belong. If you’re out in public and you want to dispose of any of these products, look for a bin.

2. Keep them away from your kids

At home, children are often curious and they can bump into these products when they’re within reach. They might end up licking some of the residue from that yummy smelling shower gel bottle in the bin. For them, if something smells good, it’s edible. Residue from empty containers can lead to a stomach upset and even poisoning. Get a bin that’s hard for them to open or seal them tightly in a trash bag whenever you’re disposing these products.

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3. Wrap the sharp objects

Sharp items like shaving blades and razor blades should always be wrapped before disposing. This isn’t only for the safety of people around the house. Think about the collectors who handle your trash on the way to the dumpsite. Wrap them properly in tissue or old newspapers so that no one is at risk of getting cut.

Wrap used pads securely before disposing of them (Photo: Shutterstock)

4. Recycle

We’re all trying to do proper waste management. Organizations are working hard to reduce the amount of plastic for the sake of the planet. You too can do your part when it comes to this. Lots of hygiene products come in plastic containers and these can end up in all sorts of places. Separate the plastics and label the bag so when they’re sent to the sites, they can be easily identified. This is how you can bring positive environmental change one step at a time.

5. Carefully handle menstrual products

There is also a certain procedure to follow when disposing of pads, panty liners, tampons and menstrual cups. For pad disposal, first, roll it up carefully. Next, you need to wrap it up in tissue or newspaper. This is to secure the pad as well. Afterwards, you need to wrap the used pad in a pad wrapping paper and secure it with the tape at the end. If you want, you can ever wrap it again in some tissue paper. Or, place the pad in a disposal bag and seal the bag well.

For tampons and panty liners wrap in some tissue paper and ensure all areas are well covered then follow up with a disposal bag.

When you’re in public and there’s a sanitary bin provided, avoid touching it with your hands because you could get sick from the bacteria. Instead, you should press the foot lever that opens the bin and ensure that the pad has landed in the bin and not on the floor. If they haven’t provided a sanitary bin with a lever just properly wrap the pad, liner or tampon and place it in the bins provided.

For a worn out menstrual cup you’ll need to wash it thoroughly, cut it into pieces, wrap the pieces up then throw it in the bin.

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