If you have just had your period, you will most likely want to start using a sanitary pad (also known as a "feminine pad" or "sanitary pad"). They are easier to use than tampons. The process can be a bit intimidating as you have to get it right or else that idea of wearing white pants in front of your crush will be totally counterproductive. Avoid chaos, scandal and worry and start by reading the first step of this article.
Part 1 of 3: Putting on the sanitary napkins
Step 1. Choose a sanitary napkin that has the right thickness, absorbency, shape, and style
With about 3.5 million women on this planet, there are many options to meet your different needs. Here is a general summary of your options:
- Thickness The lighter your period, the thinner your pad can be. However, the absorbency of sanitary napkins has improved remarkably, even in recent years. Some thin sanitary pads can be quite absorbent. They are generally more comfortable when sitting down, and you may even forget you're wearing one.
- Absorbency Take a look at the rating (light, medium or super) and the length. Also, try a couple of different brands and styles before deciding on one that you like. Sometimes "absorbency" means different things to companies or people.
- Shape. There are different forms of underwear, so unsurprisingly, there are also different forms of sanitary napkins. However, your top three shapes should be what you use for your underwear, thongs, and nighttime sanitary pads. Nighttime sanitary pads are self-explanatory (as the name implies, they're for bedtime), but… the other two? Well, wearing a sanitary pad while wearing a thong is one way to look for trouble. You can give it a try, but if you're just starting out, stick with regular sanitary pads.
Style. Again, there are two options here: winged and wingless. Sanitary napkins "with wings" have small sticky pieces that stick to your underwear. They keep your sanitary napkin on one side only and it feels like a diaper. In short, unless they irritate your skin or something similar, they are your friends!
- In general, stay away from scented pads, especially if your skin is sensitive. They can irritate areas that are definitely not meant to be irritated.
- There are also panty liners, but they are mostly used on different occasions. It only requires them when you think your period is coming or when it is ending; that is, when it is really light.
Step 2. Get in position
Most girls change their sanitary pads when they go to the bathroom, but sometimes the feeling also comes to you when you have an empty bladder. Whatever it is, find the closest bathroom, wash your hands, and drop your pants. Unfortunately, the sanitary napkin will not magically transport to your lower body. Science is still working on that.
It will be easier if you sit down and your underwear is at the height of your knees. If you do it standing is also fine, you just have to have everything within arm's reach
Step 3. Remove all wrappers or boxes from the sanitary napkin
You can throw them away, but it's a good idea to use them to throw away the sanitary napkin when you replace it. Nobody would like to see a sanitary napkin in the trash, you know? Also, never flush it down the toilet!
Step 4. Unfold the wings and remove the long shield covering the center
Also, remove the adhesive from the wings and throw all these parts in the trash (you will not need them to wrap your sanitary napkin later).
Today, in some brands of sanitary napkins the wrapper folds into the role of the protector. It is more environmentally friendly and simpler. If this is the case, it is one step less for you
Step 5. Stick the sticky part on your underwear
You don't want the pad to be directly under your vagina, or to slide up or toward your butt. If you're going to lie down for a bit, you may want to line it up a bit further back, but you'll probably have a better idea of where it might be most effective. You will improve with practice and you will see that you will be able to center your sanitary napkin in no time!
Has wings? Make sure you fold them on the outside of your underwear so they stick together. They will keep the pad from moving when you do, which can be much more comfortable and feel more natural
Part 2 of 3: Using Your Sanitary Napkins Comfortably
Step 1. Wear your underwear as usual
Ready! If your sanitary pad itches or irritates your skin, remove it and use a different one. Wearing a sanitary napkin shouldn't be a problem. When you go to the bathroom, you can check if the sanitary pad needs a change or if there is a problem. Change your sanitary pad every couple of hours as needed to avoid odors.
- Let's say it one more time: change your sanitary pad every couple of hours. Obviously, part of this depends on how heavy your flow is, but changing your sanitary napkin frequently will not only give your mind peace, but the odors will not be worse. It's a no-lose situation!
Step 2. Choose to wear more comfortable clothing
While it may feel strange at first, the pad is usually not visible. It will adapt to the curves of your body and will be well hidden. However, you might feel better wearing loose pants or a skirt. It's all about giving your mind peace! If you are worried, choose your wardrobe carefully.
A good rule of thumb is to wear those granny panties when you're on your period. Save your cute thongs for the other 25 days of the month
Step 3. Do a routine check-up, especially on your heavy days
You will soon realize that you already know how often you will have to take action and how long to take a sanitary napkin on certain days. The second you start to feel uncomfortable, you will know exactly why. However, in the beginning, at least do routine checkups, especially if your flow is heavy. Investing a little time in that moment could easily avoid an awkward situation later.
You don't need to run to the bathroom every half hour, by the way. However, checking your sanitary napkin every one to two hours will be fine. If someone asks you, it's because you drank a lot of water
Step 4. Don't use sanitary pads for no reason
Some women use sanitary pads all the time because it keeps them "fresh." Well, it's not like that. Do not do it. Your vagina needs to breathe! Having a sticky piece of cotton between your legs allows bacteria to breed in the heat. So if you are not on your period, wear light cotton underwear. There is nothing cooler than that (if they are clean, of course!). Well, except for the Prince of Bel Air. He was pretty cool.
Step 5. If you feel super uncomfortable, change it
To be clear, sanitary pads are not a girl's best friend. With this in mind, technology has come a long way and luckily women don't wear the strap-on diapers their mothers used (seriously, ask yours). Sanitary napkins are no longer horrible. So if you are very uncomfortable, change it! It may need to be refocused, saturated, smells, or maybe that specific type, size, or shape isn't right for you.
Part 3 of 3: Changing, Disposing of Sanitary Napkins, and Becoming an Expert
Step 1. Change your sanitary pads every 4 hours or so and repeat the process
Even if your sanitary napkin hasn't served its purpose, change it anyway. It will smell better and you will feel fresher, so grab another one, go to the bathroom and put it on.
Step 2. Dispose of it the right way
When you change your sanitary napkin, wrap it in your new sanitary napkin wrap. If your period has ended or you don't have a wrap, wrap your sanitary napkin in toilet paper. Put it discreetly in the trash, leaving just a trace. Don't leave the bathroom an eyesore!
Never flush anything other than toilet paper down the toilet. The sewer systems around the world are not a magic gas pipeline where everything that boots vaporizes into oblivion; everything goes somewhere. So, be kind to the world and don't flush your sanitary pads or tampons (or anything else) down the toilet
Step 3. Stay hygienic
Menstrual periods are not the cleanest female habits, so it is important to maintain hygiene. Always wash your hands when you change your sanitary napkins, and also clean yourself down there (wet, fragrance-free wipes can help here). The less chaos, the less germs. It is the healthiest for you!
Don't feel disgusted. This is an indicator of your femininity, a perfectly normal, monthly and annoying habit. You will stay hygienic because you want to be clean, not because your period is gross
Step 4. Always carry extra sanitary pads with you
Always. You never know when a disaster might strike. Maybe your period is heavier than normal or it comes when you least expect it. They can also come in handy when a friend is in trouble! When using your emergency sanitary napkin, always replace it right away. As a good girl scout, you should always be prepared!
- If you're in the bathroom and your period came and you don't have a sanitary pad on hand, never hesitate to ask another girl. You don't have to be cute and picky about it. All the girls know what you're going through. It is very bad. Rest assured that they will want to help you!
- You may also want to bring some Midol (medicine to relieve menstrual discomfort).
- If your period comes unexpectedly, don't forget to remove the blood stains in cold water; never in hot water.
- Take spare underwear with you. You can secretly hide it in an inside pocket of your purse, backpack or makeup bag, depending on what you prefer to carry. Your menstrual periods may be irregular at first, so having underwear on hand is a good idea.
- Buy sanitary pads that come with washcloths to keep your vagina cool. You can also buy them separately, but make sure they are fragrance-free and non-antibacterial so they don't irritate the sensitive skin down there. Don't douche! This can give you a yeast infection.
- Wear normal underwear when using a sanitary napkin. Forget thongs!
- Spend a sanitary pad or two. Do what they do in the commercials and pour some water on the sanitary napkin to see how much it absorbs. You don't need to use blue food coloring, but you'll feel better knowing it.
- If your period starts and you don't have sanitary pads with you, just use toilet paper, but change the toilet paper every hour or two.
- Consider using a tampon. Many women prefer to use tampons during physical activities or in general to avoid discomfort or odors.
- Never rinse your sanitary pads or tampons. Throw them in the trash.
- Don't be afraid to use tampons! They don't have to cause you any pain if you put them on correctly. It may take a couple of times to get it right, but it is much more effective than a sanitary napkin. In general, you should use the sanitary napkins when you sleep at night.