Updated: Feb 20
Even the best educated among us have heard countless wives’ tales and falsehoods about periods – ranging from “hmm, maybe that’s a little plausible” to “yeah I’m pretty sure you don’t turn into a werewolf at the full moon if you’re on your period.” We’re taking a look at some of the more believable sounding end of the spectrum of period myths – and busting them wide open.
MYTH #1 – YOU LOSE A HUGE AMOUNT OF BLOOD
Wrong! While it may seem like you are experiencing a horror movie with an endless stream of blood loss, the actual volume is not that much. In fact, women on average lose only two to three tablespoons of blood every cycle. – even heavy bleeding results in only around four tablespoons full.
Even though the volume is not super huge, the viscosity and constant nature of the flow can still lead to leaks, which can make it feel like a loss of a lot of blood. If you do stress about leaks, you can put your mind at ease with Ruby Love period underwear to keep the blood at bay. And the one period tale that is not a myth – leak-proof underwear using organic cotton is safe and healthy!
MYTH #2 – YOU CAN’T GET PREGNANT ON YOUR PERIOD
Also wrong! While this one might make sense logistically, if your uterus is shedding a baby-protecting liner, then it should know there is no baby, right? It is actually not quite true. Despite the total length of your menstrual cycle, your ovulation time can also vary and the egg that is released then can still live (like, living and thriving) for a full 12 to 24 hours. Sperm, too, can survive for around three days, so, especially the closer you are to the end of your period, the more chance there is for there to be some overlap and for you to actually get pregnant.
MYTH #3 – WATER AFFECTS YOUR PERIOD
From the blatantly false, you can’t go swimming in the ocean or else a shark will smell your period blood and eat you, to the less extreme but still untrue (water stops your period) there are any number of untruths out there surrounding your menstrual cycle and good old H2O.
Let’s start with the obvious: No, a shark will not pick up the scent of your period blood and come charging towards the shore, determined to chomp you up. That just simply is not true (and even too farfetched for Jaws).
Next, while we are at it, water does not possess some magical ability to stop your period. The pressure of the water may cause your blood to stay inside your vagina (an anti-vacuum of sorts) but that is just some temporary physics fun – your flow has not stopped and the water did not stop it. As soon as you get out of the ocean/bathtub/pool your period will continue right back as it was, flowing down as normal. Sorry for busting that one – that could have been something pretty cool.