A Bloody Mystery, Solved
Alright, what IS coming out of your vagina every month exactly?
Periods are basically made up of four elements; blood (no way!), endometrial lining, secretions and bacteria.
There’s blood but it's extra hydrated. Period blood also lacks proteins haemoglobin, prothrombin, thrombin, and fibrinogen that venous blood has and contains less iron and blood platelets.
Tissue that was created to prepare for the egg to implant is expelled when no fertilization occurs. These can appear as clots or clumps or move easily broken down in the blood.
Secretions contain water, nutrients, electrolytes, and proteins and are altered by hormonal and dietary factors. This is your body keeping foreign bacteria at bay by keeping the pH low.
Self-cleaning and protection is one of the many wonders of the vagina!
The bacteria are healthy and naturally occurring in the body. Moisture allows bacteria to accumulate on any given day so your period is going to help this along.
For so long we have been conditioned to think that period blood is gross to look at, to touch or even to talk about.
No part of your period is dirty or unnatural. It is not medical waste to be feared by others.
Using disposable period products has allowed us to ‘dispose’ of the stigma and hide our periods away.
Moving towards reusable pads and pants that need cleaning can be quite uncomfortable for some people. The more we understand what it is and why it comes each month, the sooner we can be free of the stigma and allow menstruators to make positive choices for themselves and the environment.
We exist thanks to periods after all.