Sanitary pads can cause rashes in summer! Here’s how you can deal with it

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It is hot as hell now, but can a rise in temperature make sanitary pad rashes during your periods, worse? Sadly, yes ladies! During summer, we sweat a lot and that also holds true for the vaginal area. That can even lead to itching and irritation. It doesn’t take long for irritated skin to develop a period rash. Those who have experienced it know how much trouble pad rashes can bring with them. But have you ever tried to find a solution or are you still choosing to suffer? Well, if not, we are here to help!

To understand more about period rash and find out ways to get rid of it, Health Shots spoke to Dr Sangeeta Gomes, Consultant – Obstetrician & Gynaecologist, Motherhood Hospitals, Sarjapur Bangalore.

You’re not alone in this. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

What causes a period rash?

Dr Gomes said, “Sanitary pads are often made from compounds called polyolefins (used to make clothes, straws, and ropes). They also contain absorbent gels, wood cellulose, and absorbent foam. All these materials have the potential to irritate the skin. Pads are also bleached to increase their absorbing capacity and bleach contains dioxin. When pads come in contact with blood, they release dioxin and methane gas, making women vulnerable to rashes and infections.”

Wearing a sanitary pad often leaves an unwanted rash that can even lead to itching, swelling, redness, and other infections. The rash can be caused by friction, moisture, heat, and irritation that contribute to bacterial buildup.

You can take certain precautions and treatments to help you deal with a period rash from pads, especially during summer.

Know 5 ways to deal with a period rash here:

1. Wear cotton underwear and loose-fitting clothes

Wearing cotton underwear provides proper ventilation that helps your skin breathe and prevents sweating. Without sweating, there is no built-up moisture; and it less chance of developing rashes. Also, if you choose to wear skinny jeans and jeggings, this might not be the best option during periods. You should consider going for loose and comfortable pants or skirts to ensure proper airflow.

2. Choose the right pad

It is common to get period rashes due to pads while experiencing periods but it is necessary to select the right pad suitable for your skin type and flow. One of the main qualities that a good pad should include is being a quick absorbent with a soft outer layer. If you have sensitive skin and get extreme rashes every time you have your periods, it might be time to switch to all-cotton/organic pads. They are often the solution for rashes as they don’t contain dyes or harmful adhesives.

Maybe it’s time to look at the ingredients of your sanitary pads. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Use menstrual cups

You can also opt for menstrual cups as they can hold more blood than other methods like sanitary pads and tampons. Menstrual cups are also bio-degradable, cheap, easy to dispose of, and safer to use. They are extremely useful in preventing rashes.

4. Use soothing creams to help with the rashes

You should use creams made from natural agents like calamine to soothe the rashes. Calamine reduces pain, itching, and discomfort. In case of doubts, it is always advisable to consult your doctor who can tell you which cream to go for.

Also, read: It’s hot as hell but can a rise in temperature affect your periods? Sadly, yes

5. Keep your intimate area dry and clean

Keeping your intimate parts clean and dry goes without saying. You should also ensure that the appropriate pH level of the vagina is generally between 3 to 4.5 (moderately acidic). A normal pH level acts as a defense against bacterial growth. Your doctor can guide you on how to maintain a good pH balance to ensure good vaginal health.

Treat your vaginal health and hygiene with care. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

So, now you know that getting rashes from pads in summer is normal however you can easily avoid and soothe rashes.

Along with these tips mentioned above, also keep these period hygiene tips in mind:

* Change your sanitary pads frequently to avoid rashes and infection
* Wash your vaginal area with warm water every few hours especially during the period
* You can also use talcum powder such as baby powder to get rid of rashes
* Stay hydrated and drink at least 7-8 glasses of water a day
* Avoid the use of any scented products down there as it might irritate your skin
* Use wipes to clean the vagina. Wipe from front to back.
* Avoid the use of soaps down there to clean it
* Consume fresh fruits and avoid salty snacks for the sake of your vaginal health
* Use a larger pad if your flow is heavier

Ladies, with these tips, you can avoid or get rid of pad rashes in any season!

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