While menstruation is a normal phenomenon, it is still a subject that is tabooed from discussions. The fear, stigma and superstitions around menstruation lead to the lack of awareness on safe and hygienic practices. It also prevents women from getting their hands on menstrual hygiene products. Menstrual Hygiene Day is celebrated every year on May 28 and has immense significance in the global front in changing the way menstruation is perceived worldwide.
When Was Menstrual Hygiene Day First Celebrated?
The German-based NGO WASH United initiated this observance in 2014, and the date May 28 signifies the 28-day menstruation cycle of women. Women Cooking Food During Menstruation Will be Reborn As Kutri (Bitch), Says Swami Krushnaswarup Dasji of Swaminarayan Bhuj Mandir.
What is The Significance of Menstrual Hygiene Day ?
Menstrual Hygiene Day is a critical celebration as even today, millions of people do not have access to safe and reliable products like pads or tampons. While the eco-friendly invention of the menstrual cup has made it easier for some women to have a safer period cycle, it is harder to access in many parts still. Many women continue to use or reuse cotton cloth for their periods, which leads to various infections and further complications. Early Menstruation Linked to Higher Diabetes Risk.
Also, there are multiple superstitions around menstruation, especially in India, that make it difficult for the ones experiencing this even to have a hygienic space to rest. All these challenges motivated the celebration of Menstrual Hygiene Day. Red Dot Challenge: Diana Penty, Kubbra Sait, Neeru Bajwa Campaign to Stop Period Shaming for Menstrual Hygiene Day.
The struggles for accessing a safe and hygienic means of experiencing menstruation was further highlighted with the beginning of this pandemic. In India itself, the access to sanitary napkins saw a pause, and in various other parts of the world, finding these products continues to be a challenge due to over-stocking or interruptions in the export. It is still a challenge in 2020, to have a safe and hygienic menstrual cycle.