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GYNAE 101: Swimming On Your Period This Summer

woman swims in pool

Last updated on July 18th, 2021 at 12:39 PM

Whether it’s a summer vacation or UK staycation, if your period happens to fall on the days when swimming is involved it can be very daunting, with many women feeling uncomfortable about the idea of swimming on their period at all.  

To check just how reluctant menstruators are about splashing in the water while bleeding, INTIMINA surveyed over 1,000 people and found that 44% feel uncomfortable swimming on their period. And, while 36% use a menstrual cup when swimming, 28% don’t swim on their period at all!

With so many fears and misconceptions about enjoying the water during the menstruating days, INTIMINA’s medical expert and gynaecologist, dr. Alyssa Dweck says “there is no good medical reason that one needs to avoid swimming during menstruation.” 

Dr. Dweck explains all the reasons why swimming is the best thing you can do while bleeding during hot summer months: 

1. A dose of “feel good” chemicals

Swimming is a great cardiovascular and strength exercise. As the entire body is moving, swimming offers a total workout.

Also, we sweat more during menstruation, so swimming is an ideal exercise during the summer heat. 

Dr Dweck explains even more important benefits of swimming during menstruation: “Exercise is well known to help alleviate menstrual symptoms including PMS, cramps and bloating.

In addition, feel-good chemicals called endorphins are released in the brain during exercise, giving a sense of wellbeing and even euphoria.” 

2. The great fear of leakage

The most common fear when it comes to periods is the fear of leakage. And it’s no different with swimming.

76% of INTIMINA’s survey respondents worry about menstrual leakage during swimming.

“Many women worry they could leak while wearing a bathing suit which is, of course, uncomfortable.

A menstrual cup or disc offers excellent protection in this instance since it collects instead of absorbing menstrual flow”, says dr. Dweck.

She adds: “Leakage is unlikely with a properly inserted cup which gives women confidence in a bathing suit.

Pads are not ideal for swimming and tampons, while absorbent of menstrual blood might also absorb pool/ocean water with vigorous swimming.

The old wives’ tale about swimming with menstruation attracting sharks is just that – a myth.”

One more piece of advice is necessary, and that is – to stay hydrated. Whether you are on the river banks or sea and ocean beaches, always make sure you drink plenty of water!

As if the summer heat is not enough to make you dehydrated, estrogen and progesterone, hormones that fluctuate right before and during your period, add up.

As a result, they make you even more likely to feel dehydrated while menstruating.

There is no reason why swimming during menstruation should be daunting. On the contrary, with the right menstrual products, such as menstrual cups, it should be a carefree experience.

So, put on a bathing suit, set your mind at rest, and enjoy the summer swimming.