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I have my periods. That could be a relief to many women, or not!
But then again there can be the stinker of menstrual odour. Quite an embarrassing experience, if people have to screw up their noses every time you pass them. ?
But according to Dr Bernard Olayo, a public health specialist, the solution is probably just bathing. Says the doctor: “Ideally, a woman should not smell when she is having her menses as this is just blood which ordinarily does not smell. One needs to be especially keen on hygiene at this point. Shower at least twice a day and change sanitary towels or tampons regularly.”
But then, the stench can still linger even with proper hygiene. If so, there could be an abnormality, that could either be due to infection in the vagina or cervix. Dr Kenneth Onyango advises men not to screw their noses at menstruation. Instead, he says, men should take a keen interest on this physiological process.
The foul menstruation disorder could be as a result of many factors, including vaginitis, which is caused by trichmonial infection, leading to abnormal discharge from the vagina. Monial infection can also stink up your nether areas during menstruation. It is particularly common in people with diabetes, women who have been taking anti-biotics for a long time, as well as pregnant women and those on contraceptive pills.
So, does that mean you shun sex during your menses? Well, for starters, no man would want to wade through a stinking swamp of menstrual waste! But if you observe basic hygiene and there are no stink balls coming from the V-area, then some ‘jig-jig’ during your periods is absolutely safe.
All this talk about danger and women being ‘dirty’ or ‘unclean’ are based on cultural and religious myths. As a matter of fact, it has been found that sex during the menses can ease PMS. Dr Olayo notes that cultural perception that a woman on her periods is unclean and should thus not interact with other people is wrong, terming it a normal physiological process.
You can even have a chat with some women, who will swear that orgasms are the ideal therapy for cramps, while orgasmic contractions give a soothing internal massage that no medication can afford! And with findings that endorphins released during orgasms are natural mood enhancers and painkillers, perhaps all a woman needs when she’s PMSing is just proper shagging!
Word of caution though, you need to be extra careful during your menses for the sake of safe sex, since the risks of sexually transmitted infections are even higher, besides the likelihood of developing yeast or bacterial infections, since the vagina’s pH is less acidic during menstruation. And, surprise, surprise, you could still get pregnant during your menses, unless you’re on the pill.
So, clean the ‘cookie jar’ to get rid of the foul odour and get romping. Don’t let the stains on the sheets bother you – you can always use a towel to cover up or take things to the bathroom.
Your periods need not slow down your sex life, come stench or stain!
- Additional reporting from online sources