Whether you prefer to wear sanitary pads, a menstrual cup, period panties, there are some tampons instead when that time of the month arrives, it is better that you find something which suits YOU.
Tampons may seem difficult (or uncomfortable) to use, but they are one of the easiest when you get the hang of them.
1. Inserting a Tampon with Fingers
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Since you are about to get up close and personal with your body, it is essential that your hands are completely clean and free of any germs and bacteria which could get into your reproductive system.
- Unwrap your tampon. Be careful to dispose of the wrapper in a nearby dustbin, and certainly not in the toilet to avoid any clogging.
- Make sure your tampon is ready to use. For this, ensure that strings are hanging from the tampon. Pull on the strings to see if they are firmly attached. Do not use if the string comes off, or you see any other flaw. If you find any holes or tears on the packaging of the tampon, discard it and get a new one immediately. Do not use a compromised tampon.
- It is now time to insert the tampon in your body. For this, it is imperative to know your body well. It is surprising to see how many women are unaware of how their own body works, thus, fear the use of a tampon and end up inserting it wrong. However, regardless of whether you are a first-timer or someone who has been using tampons their whole life – the key is simply knowing where to insert them. For this, let ´s teach you an anatomy lesson:
There are 3 openings down below (you know where). The Urethra is where your urine comes out from, and it is NOT definitely where the tampon goes. Even if you try inserting (do not), you will find the hole too small to insert. Another hole is the Anus or basically where your poop comes out of. Although this may seem large enough, again, it is not where the tampon is supposed to go. The tampon goes in the third hole; the Vaginal opening. You can find this somewhere between the Urethra and Anus.
Before inserting the tampon, it would be better if you make yourself aware of where the vaginal opening is. Simply wash your hands and feel yourself down there, find the hole, and let the next step begin.
- Find a comfortable position for yourself to begin inserting the tampon. For this, you need to relax the muscles of your vaginal opening. Find the manner which suits you best; you can sit on the toilet seat with your knees apart or you could squat with one leg propped up on the bathtub or toilet seat, thereby making your access to the vaginal opening very easy.
- Relax the muscles of your vagina. If your muscles act stiff, it may be difficult to insert the tampon. Thus, find a way suitable for you to relax. A top tip is to act as if you are holding in your poop. This means, squeeze your butt in, thereby allowing the muscles of your vagina to tighten. This eases the insertion of the tampon.
- Twist the strings of the tampon. This will create a slight dent in the tampon, which will be exactly the place where you will place your finger when you are going to insert the tampon.
- Hold the tampon firmly with your thumb and forefinger (the finger next to the thumb). The forefinger should be placed on the indentation.
- It is time to insert the tampon. Find your vaginal opening, and carefully insert the tampon with the help of the forefinger and thumb. Remember, it is imperative that the tampon goes carefully in, and sits in its designated place. Thus, you should continue pushing the tampon in the direction of the lower back, and until the tampon sits comfortably.
In case of any discomfort, it is a sign that the tampon hasn’t gone as far back as it should have. Generally, you should continue pushing until you reach the base of your finger. However, this could slightly vary across individuals.
- Once you have inserted the tampon in the opening, ensure that its string continues to dangle outside your body. This will be used later to remove the tampon once it has absorbed most period blood (simply pull on the string after relaxing the muscles of your vagina, and voila! – the tampon is out).
- Wash your hands, and rest assured – your tampon is in.
2. Inserting a Tampon with a Tampon Applicator
Some tampons come with an applicator of cardboard or plastic. This allows easy insertion into the vaginal opening.
The steps are like using a tampon without an applicator.
- Steps 1-4) Same as without tampon applicator.
- Hold the tampon with its applicator, and it is time to insert. The process becomes easier with applicators with round-edges, or you can even lubricate the tip of the applicator to smoothen the insertion.
- Place the tip of the applicator at a 45-degree angle with your vagina. Push the tampon inside using the inner tube of the applicator and continue pushing until the tampon sits comfortably.
- Gently pull out the applicator and ensure that the strings of the tampon continue to hang outside your body – your tampon is now in.
- Discard the tampon applicator by throwing it in the bin. Remember to not flush it, especially if it is a plastic applicator since that could clog your toilet.
Choose the tampon catering to your body needs and period flow; regular, super, super plus, etc. Change it after every 4-8 hours, and preferably do not leave it in overnight. Leaving a tampon in your vagina for very long can be detrimental to health, causing Toxic Shock Syndrome in severe cases.