The Deputy Medical Director, General Hospital, Ijede, Dr. Olumuyiwa Balogun-Oluwa, has described the menstrual cycle as hormonal changes or processes witnessed on a monthly basis by women to prepare them for a possible pregnancy.
Speaking during an interview session with news correspondents as part of activities to commemorate the Year 2022 World Menstrual Hygiene Day, Dr. Balogun-Oluwa said menstruation is experienced when the body discards the monthly buildup of the lining of the uterus, through the opening of the cervix, and passes out of the body through the vagina.
He identified four phases of the menstrual cycle including the menstruation phase, follicular phase, ovulation and luteal phase, noting that the common menstrual problems faced by women are painful periods, premenstrual syndrome, heavy menstrual bleeding and prolonged amenorrhea among others
While informing that menstrual hygiene is the process of practising and maintaining good proper hygiene during the menstrual cycle of the female gender, the Deputy Medical Director maintained that there is a need to change sanitary products at intervals of 4-6 hours daily to establish vaginal hygiene.
He pointed out that proper and regular cleansing of the vagina, proper disposal of the sanitary products to prevent the spread of bacteria and infections as well as washing of hands frequently to get rid of germs, among others, are essential to the total well being of the female gender.
His words; “It is essential and important that women and adolescents cultivate the habit of good menstrual hygiene because it helps prevent certain urinary tract infections, rashes and irritation that could affect the entire reproductive carrier of a woman like infertility and birth complications”
Poor menstrual hygiene, according to Dr. Balogun-Oluwa, can pose a physical, psychological and mental health risk due to various challenges being faced by the female gender during menstruation such as stigmatisation, social norms, cultural taboos, lack of basic services like water, toilets and the rising cost of sanitary products among others.
The Deputy Medical Director, however, advised all women to indulge in regular visits to their Doctors when having any kind of menstrual challenge, irrespective of their level of sexual activities.