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The Toxicity of Tampons

+Photo+courtesy+naturalcycles.org
Photo courtesy naturalcycles.org

Period poverty is a growing problem but what if tampons were actually really harmful to the human body? Tampons especially are extremely problematic to the women’s body because of bleaching chemicals and because they’re considered “health devices,” many tampon companies don’t have to include the ingredients included in them. 

On August 17th, 2022, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and Grace Meng usher in the Robin Danielson Menstrual Product and Intimate Care Product Safety Act of 2022. This act “directs the National Institute of Health (NIH) to conduct research to determine whether the presence of dioxins, phthalates, titanium dioxide, and other chemical additives like colorants and fragrances, pose any health risks to people who use menstrual and intimate care products,” says attorney and public policy advocate Martha Chaudry.

The FDA categorizes tampons, pads, menstrual cups) as “medical devices and intimate care products (douches, wipes, washes, sprays, powders) are regulated by the FDA as cosmetics and/or personal care products.” Says Martha Chaudry. Many companies don’t include dangerous chemicals in the ingredients because they’re medical devices. Tangirala mentions, “because tampons are considered medical devices, there’s no labeling requirement for ingredients.” The lack of Government oversight, many companies can get away with not including the harmful chemicals included in menstrual products. 

These products already do harm like toxic shock syndrome (TSS). Many women have faced death from toxic shock syndrome from tampons. Lauren Wasser, a former model, suffers from TSS. She had to get both her legs amputated because of it. She also “suffered from organ failure as a result of TSS,” says Saman Javed in Toxic Shock Syndrome amputee Lauren Wasser on how she drew hope from the experience. Lauren has been spreading awareness about tampons and what they can cause.

Many women face the problem of period poverty and more face the problem of having harmful chemicals in their pads, tampons, or menstrual cups. It’s important to find these products that are organic and easier to decompose or find a company that is transparent and lists the ingredients that are used to make these menstrual devices. 

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About the Contributor
Aubree Hastings, Staff Writer
Hello, my name is Aubree Hastings, I'm a News editor for Dragon Spirit News. I have a huge passion for writing and I hope to have a career that involves it!

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