Tampons let you play sports, swim and do other fun things during your period. But if you’ve just started getting your period, tampons may still be a mystery. Can you pee with a tampon in? How often do you have to change it? We answer 6 of the most embarrassing tampon questions.
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1. Can You Pee With a Tampon In?
If you’ve never used a tampon before, this question may be the one thing that stops you from using them. If you’re like us (and every other woman), you probably assumed that the tampon would just “plunk” right out into the toilet. The good news is that this is not what happens. And yes you can pee with a tampon in.
Urine comes out of the urethra, while tampons are inserted into the vagina – a completely different hole.
2. Should You Change Your Tampon Every Time You Go to the Bathroom?
Another tricky question: should you change your tampon every time you use the bathroom? With tampons being so close to both holes, many girls assume that you should just change it every single time you go.
And the answer is simple: it’s up to you. Doctors say that if urine or fecal matter gets onto the string, you should change it to avoid infections and smells. But if the string is clean, it really doesn’t matter whether you change it or not.
3. Should Tampons Feel Uncomfortable?
Many girls who try tampons for the first time complain that they feel uncomfortable or painful. While not unheard of, tampons should not cause discomfort or pain. You should not feel it at all.
If you’re using tampons and experiencing discomfort, stop use right away and talk to your doctor. It may just be that you’re not inserting the tampon properly. It’s important to put it in as far as you can before releasing. Tampons that are too low may feel like they are going to fall out. Pain may also be an indication that you’re not using the right size tampon – go with something smaller.
4. Can Tampons Get “Lost” Inside Your Vagina?
Another common question that girls have. Here’s the good news: a tampon cannot get lost in your vagina. Even if you can’t find the string, the tampon is in there somewhere.
If the string has “disappeared,” you’ll need to go fishing for it using your finger. Get out a mirror and find a comfortable place to do the job. It’s not a pleasant experience, but you will eventually find the tampon and be able to pull it out. Don’t leave the tampon in, hoping that it will come out on its own. Leaving in a tampon for too long puts you at risk for infection.
5. Can You Accidentally Put a Tampon in the Wrong Hole?
It’s true that you have three holes down there: your vagina, your urethra (where urine comes out of) and your anus. While it’s not impossible to put a tampon in the wrong hole, it’s highly unlikely and something that you shouldn’t stress about.
The urethra is a very small hole, so good luck trying to fit a tampon in there. And chances are, you won’t be trying to insert a tampon into your anus thinking it’s your vagina.
6. Can You Wear a Tampon Overnight?
Many girls worry that if they wear a tampon overnight, they’ll get TSS (toxic shock syndrome). While it can happen, the chances are highly unlikely. Tampons can be worn for up to eight hours, which is equivalent to a night’s sleep (longer than a night’s sleep for many people). Unless you plan on sleeping for longer than this (say, on the weekends), it should be perfectly fine to wear a tampon overnight. If you have a heavier flow, you may want to consider wearing a cup or pad overnight. The reason for this is not because you’re at risk for TSS, but because you may have leakage issues, which can be unpleasant.
Tampons give you more freedom during your period, but they’re still mysterious to girls who have yet to try them. The good news is that most of your fears are probably just that – fears. If you have any other questions, don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor or someone you trust for answers.