Is it bad to put tampons in without your period?

As a human – and by that, I mean someone who knows what a uterus is – you may have wondered at some point whether or not it’s okay to wear tampons when you’re not on your period. Or maybe this thought has never even crossed your mind because, let’s face it, some people don’t spend their days thinking about the ins and outs of feminine hygiene products (not judging). Either way, we’re here now and we’ve got questions!

So let’s get started…

First things first: Tampon etiquette

Before we dive into answering this question with all sorts of technical explanations (trust me, there will be), I think it’s important that we cover one thing: tampon etiquette! If you are new to using tampons or haven’t had many opportunities to discuss them with others (which is understandable – these things aren’t exactly brunch conversation material), then pay attention!

  1. Don’t flush ’em!: If you take anything away from this article today (besides answers), make sure it’s that you should never flush tampons down the toilet. Repeat after me: NEVER FLUSH TAMPOONS DOWN THE TOILET. It can lead to plumbing issues for both yourself and for everyone else in the building.

  2. Change time: Make sure to change out your tampon every 4-8 hours.

  3. Keep clean hands while putting visible marks if needed

Great, now that we’ve covered those basics (phew)… let’s answer our original question!

Can you wear a tampon before getting your period?

The short but unsatisfying answer? No…and yes? Let me explain.

Tampons are designed for use during menstruation because they are meant to absorb menstrual blood as opposed to other bodily fluids (think urine). However, it is technically possible to use tampons when you are not menstruating.

Why do people even consider wearing a tampon when they’re not on their period?

I thought you’d never ask! There could be a few reasons that someone might consider wearing a tampon while not menstruating…

  1. They enjoy the ~comfort~ of wearing them – everyone has their own learning curve when it comes to using feminine hygiene products, and sometimes it takes time to figure out what feels most comfortable.

  2. Preventative measures – there have been studies done linking an increased risk for Toxic Shock Syndrome (see I told you there would be technical stuff) with “super absorbent” tampons (more on TSS in just a bit). As such, some people prefer to wear lower-absorbency tampons or pads as a preventative measure.

  3. Spotting- Dr Lightfoot says “A person can try using one if they’re experiencing very light spotting at the beginning or end of their cycle,” she explains.”

  4. Maybe they lost some hair off down below.

  5. A desire for total flexibility – Tampons let wearer go commando more easily

So those are just some reasons why someone may opt to wear a tampon outside of their menstrual cycle (phew, that was informative!).

All joking aside (just kidding we’ll keep the jokes coming), let’s get back into the serious stuff:

The risks associated with non-period-related tampon usage

As mentioned earlier, Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) is absolutely something to keep in mind while considering non-menstrual uses of these guys (and this is where things get super fun!).

What Exactly Is Toxic Shock Syndrome?

Sadly enough toxic shock syndrome or TSS bears 80% mortality rate without proper medications and medical supervision; hence arising concern from victims must ring alarm bell especially among females.

Okay, tell us more about Toxic Shock Syndrome

I am happy to oblige! (Sense the sarcasm?)

TSS is a bacterial infection caused by Staphylococcus aureus. It can develop rapidly and cause severe complications within hours or days of onset. Although rare, it has been associated with tampon use among menstruating people (so don’t forget that “among menstruating people” part). If left untreated (hint: don’t do that), TSS can lead to kidney failure, respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), sepsis, and ultimately death. Scary stuff.

Studies have found that higher-absorbency tampons are often the culprit in cases of menstrual-related TSS as they provide an environment for bacteria growth (#GrossButTrue)…. yep…imagine sleeping in your own stew thank you very much!

So where does this leave us? Should we avoid tampons altogether?! Absolutely not–that’s too extreme!!

By using lower-absorbency varieties tampons rather than super absorbent ones even when menstruation occurs gives preventive measure without other health threats arising from their use like lack of airflow leading candida overgrowth or UTIs/yeast infections.

Summing It Up…

It’s generally recommended to only wear tampons during your period (#Period) for good measure but it truly comes down to personal preference as long one chooses products correctly after research for their body’s preferences and risks aren’t taken ignorantly. Make sure you read all product labels carefully before purchasing so that you know what absorbency level best suits YOU (#YouDoYou).

As always (wait for it)……stay safe out there folks!

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