Indian Sanitary Napkins Can Cause Cancer: Harmful Chemical inside Pads

Indian Sanitary Napkins Can Cause Cancer: Harmful Chemical inside Pads
Sanitary Pads Cause Cancer

It looks like the sanitary napkins' future is in jeopardize by new research claims.

New research suggests that many of India’s sanitary pads contain harmful chemicals, which can cause cancer, hypothyroidism, endometriosis, infertility, asthma etc.

This claim is really horrendous for women and it’s an alarming thing.

Research Conducted by Delhi – Based Environmental NGO

Sanitary Pads Cause Cancer

Recent studies conducted by Delhi – based environmental NGO Toxic Link with titled “Wrapped in Secrecy: Toxic Chemicals in Menstrual Products” claim that so many pads in India have harmful chemicals -: volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and Phthalates.

The researchers took samples of 10 sanitary brands including whisper, Stayfree, sofy among the inorganic section and PeeSafe, Nua, and Plush among the organic section.

Both samples tested positive for harmful chemicals.

Dr. Akanksha Mehrotra, program coordinator at Toxic Link, who was also involved in studies said “Most of these chemicals are added to make the pad more elastic. But, they are dangerous because they can cause problems like PCOS, endometriosis, hypothyroidism… They can change the hormonal functioning of the body. Phthalates leak out; they are not bound to the product they are added to.” Besides, long-term exposure to the chemicals can also lead to cancer.

Priti Mahesh, the chief program coordinator at Toxics Link suggests that “We never claimed if any other type of sanitary product is better than napkins. They may or may not contain chemicals — it is subject to further investigations.”

Also Read: Green Menstruation(Reusable Sanitary Pads): A Way To Curb India’s 4.4Million Kg

Researchers Made Some Recommendation For Sanitary Pads

sanitary pads cause cancer

Long-term exposure to sanitary pads in the vagina causes infection and so many other problems.

In the vaginal area, mucous membranes absorb these harmful chemicals from sanitary napkins, which later cause cancer and hormonal and behavioral problems in women.

Because of these dangerous findings studies made some recommendations in that regard -:

  • The study recommends detailed studies into the presence of VOCs and phthalates in menstrual products
  • Government bodies should frame standards for the chemicals used in these napkins
  • Manufacturer companies should disclose the ingredients they used during the sanitary pads making process
  • During advertisements, producers provide relevant information and warnings about the products
  • Regulation to promote substitution or reduction in the use of these chemicals in the products

Also Read: Top 5 Myths about Menstrual Hygiene

Are Menstrual Cups a better option?

menstrual cups are better than sanitary pads

It’s a silicone and rubber cup that is not actually harmful to women’s bodies and are not causing any bacterial infection.

According to the experts, menstrual cups are less harmful but given the lack of research into period products, we are not sure if it is completely safe or not.


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