Are there dangers of Tampons and pads and are they really necessary? They are mass-produced, and heavily marketed and cheaply made out of bleached rayon and plastics and other chemicals that are bad for your body and the environment.
Dangers of Tampons and Pads:
Almost all sanitary napkins and tampons are made with bleached rayon, cotton and plastics, how safe do you think that material is to be inside or very close to your Vagina? Not to mention these products leave behind fibers in your vagina that can cause bladder, vaginal infections, and Toxic Shock Syndrome. Tampons are also known to absorb the natural fluids and bacteria’s that the vagina produces to stay clean and healthy. Let’s look at the #1 ingredient in generic tampons and sanitary napkins: Rayon. Rayon is a fiber that is made from cellulose fibers, cellulose is a natural fiber, but to produce Rayon chemical procedures are needed that include: carbon disulphide, sulfuric acid, chlorine and caustic soda. Side effects from exposure to too much Rayon can include: nausea, vomiting, chest pain, headaches and many others. Rayon is not just found in tampons and pads, but a lot of clothes are made from it as well. Sanitary napkins also contain quite a bit of plastic, which does not allow sufficient air flow ‘down there’ so in turn can also cause an array of infections. Tampons and pads are also bleached using chlorine, which results in the production of dioxin, which is linked to breast cancer, endometriosis, immune system suppression and various other ailments. There are alternatives to the dangers of tampons and pads.
1. A menstrual cup is the first choice for a tampon/ pad alternative. It is a flexible silicone cup that is inserted into the vagina. Essentially this cup catches all the blood and you empty it every 12 hours during your cycle and reinsert it. I know what you are thinking… gross. My initial thought was that no one would ever use it. That changed as I researched all of the positive effects that came from using a cup. If it is properly inserted and taken out there is no reason that you should ever have to actually touch blood, but if you do, just wash them. It is recommended to continue to use pads or liners until you have mastered the insertion technique, just in case. Not only will you save a lot of money using a menstruation cup, but you will be doing a huge favor to the environment as well. If an average women uses about 17,000 pads or tampons during her entire menstruation period, X that by 3.5 billion women in the world, and yeah, you do the math…. Another great thing about using menstrual cups is that many women have reported to having less severe cramping during their period! I know that alone would encourage some women to making this change. Some brands of menstrual cups are: ‘DivaCup,’ and ‘Lunette,’ among many others. Sizes are 1 for women under 30, Size 2 for women who have had children or are over 30 (just slightly larger).
Here are the Menstrual Cup Benefits:
- - Healthier for you, eliminates the risk of toxic shock syndrome, exposure to dangerous chemicals, dyes, and dangerous materials.
- - Environmentally friendly.
- - More comfortable, almost all opinions I’ve heard is that it is not felt at all.
- - Some have experienced less cramping.
- - Saves you lots of money.
- - Can still exercise, lay down, go to the beach, swim, yoga and anything else you would do with a tampon for up to 12 hours.
- - Women who use these tell me they will never go back!
2. There are also reusable pad products are made of safe materials that come with washable highly absorbent inserts to suit all different levels of flow. These would be a great option to women that do not like to use products that you have to insert. These reusable ‘pads’ are made with safe breathable materials to keep your area healthy, and leak free! Some brands that are available today are: ‘Luna Pads,’ ‘Glad Rags,’ and ‘Pleasure Puss’.
3. If you must use tampons and pads, we recommend using one from a company that uses natural organic cotton products that do not leach chemicals, and do not leave synthetic materials behind. These can still absorb your natural fluids and they are still not the best things for the environment, but at least cotton is a more natural substance that can biodegrade much quicker and safer. Some brands of these products are: ‘Seventh Generation,’ and ‘Natracare.’ (See links below)
This video show how to use the cup:
If you are worried about how much fluid menstruation cups can hold in comparison to tampons and pads check out this video.
Still not convinced? See the reviews on Amazon from the links below:
The DivaCup is a reusable, bell-shaped menstrual cup that is worn internally and sits low in the vaginal canal, collecting rather than absorbing your menstrual flow. Menstrual cups have existed since the 1930s when women were searching for an alternative to the choices of the time. Yet, its breakthrough into the feminine hygiene industry is much more recent. The DivaCup can be worn for up to 12 hours without leaks or worry.
Made from the highest quality healthcare grade silicone
• Does not contain any of the following: latex, plastic, PVC, acrylic, acrylate, BPA, phthalate, elastomer, polyethylene, and free of colors and dyes.
• Reusable and eco-friendly – no waste, no chemicals.
Model 2 – post child birth
Second option for Menstrual Cups – Lunette:
With almost exact qualities as the Diva Cup the Lunette also has very good reviews.
Luna washable pads –
Luna pads are designed to create a more healthy product for both your body and the environment. Eliminating chlorine and bleach, plastics, pesticides and other chemicals or dangerous materials from contacting your skin. Lunapads result in over 1 million disposable pads and tampons from being diverted from landfills every month. In time, they also save you money
If you have to use tampons I would recommend Eco-friendly, Organic cotton, chlorine free, rayon free, chemical fragrance and dye free pads or tampons without a plastic applicator. Here is my list:
Seventh-Generation Tampons are made from certified organic cotton, whitened without chemicals containing chlorine, and free of added fragrances and dyes. They come with a cardboard applicator or without.
Seventh Generation Pad are made of a natural absorbent material derived from wheat, and offer the protection needed and are contoured for a comfortable fit. Free of added fragrances and dyes, and whitened without chemicals containing chlorine.
Other options from Seventh Generation:
Seventh Generation Store
Natracare also has healthy Eco-friendly options:
Natracare Wipes and Baby Wipes:
Unfortunately, many popular brands that parents trust unquestioningly often contain harsh foaming agents like SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate), as well as synthetic preservatives such as phenoxyethanol, SHG and Parabens in their baby care products. SLS strips the skin of its protective layer and can make it a permeable pathway for the absorption of toxins into the body. They also contain parabens, propylene glycol, polyethylene glycol (PEG), Isopropyl myristate, and formaldehyde releasing preservatives such as imidazolidinyl urea. Many baby wipes available today are made from a synthetic cloth, such as polypropylene which does not biodegrade or chlorine bleached viscose rayon.
Natracare is free of all these chemicals, are better for the environment and are free of animal testing and suitable for vegans.
chlorine free and women can be reassured by the fact that Natracare tampons do not contain any synthetic materials, such as rayon or polypropylene, or any chemical additives such as surfactants, fragrances, dyes, or lubricants. Choosing only fully certified organic cotton removes the risk of direct exposure to residues from chemical pesticides, fertilizers, defoliants and fungicides commonly used on conventionally grown cotton.
Certified organic 100% cotton and natural cellulose materials derived from renewable and sustainable sources and are over 99% biodegradable and compostable. Natracare’s totally chlorine-free and 100% plastic-free pads provide the natural choice for women – helping you to avoid the synthetic materials such as rayon, plastics, chlorine bleaches, petroleum derived super absorbents, latex and chemicals such as fragrances and dyes.