Having some type of odor with your menstrual cycle is normal. Typically it is very mild and you are the only one who notices it. But when it is strong enough for you to ask, “Why does my period smell?” it may be time to examine its cause.
Menstrual odor happens when menstrual fluid comes in contact with air. When menstrual fluid is absorbed within the vagina, like through a tampon, it is not exposed to the air, so there shouldn’t be an odor. If you’re feeling worried, just be sure to change your pads frequently to help keep odor at bay.
Why Does Period Blood Smell?
Before going any further, you need to know that fresh blood always has a smell, but it usually smells as a slight tinge of rusted iron. It should not be foul smelling though. Now coming back to why period blood smells, it usually happens when period blood gets trapped in a sanitary pad for extended hours – it may stay there for 6 hours or more overnight. The blood becomes stagnant and gives enough time to pathogens to grow in it. The foul odor you notice when you change your sanitary pad after several hours is actually the smell of the dying red blood cells that nourish the growth of bacteria.
You also develop bad odor during period because pads block the flow of air to your genital area. A tampon may mask the smell but will still let bacteria persist in the body. In fact, you will experience very bad odor when you leave a tampon inside your vagina for a long time after menstruation.
Here are some other common answers to the question, why does period blood smell?
1. Acidity or pH Levels
2. Medical Concerns such as yeast infections, cervix infections and trichomonas infection
Things You Can You Do
Now you know the answer to your question, “Why does period blood smell bad?” You may also want to know what to do in this situation. Here are a few suggestions:
1. Try Using Chemical-Free Menstrual Products
2. Keep Your Pubic Hair Trimmed
3. Take Daily Showers
4. Do Not Use Baby Wipes or Wet Wipes
5. Keep an Extra Pair of Undies in Your Bag