Menstrual Products

Q&A: Which is healthier to use – tampons or pads?

Both tampons and pads are healthy options, so which one you choose to use is based on your preferences. Some girls prefer pads because they are very simple to use – just stick one in your underwear and you are ready to go. Others like the fact that tampons are worn inside the body, so they can’t be seen when you are wearing tight-fitting clothes such as a bathing suit. Many girls use pads on some days and tampons on other days. Regardless of what you choose, make sure you change your pad or tampon at least as frequently as you’re directed by the manufacturer. This will help you remain as healthy as possible during your period.

Some girls wonder if tampons are less healthy than pads because they have heard of TSS (toxic shock syndrome), a very rare condition that can be caused by improper use of tampons. You can find lots more information about TSS here: understanding toxic shock syndrome basics. In a nutshell, doctors recommend using the lowest absorbency tampon that will meet your personal needs, and changing the tampon regularly.

I don’t think you can put a “healthy” label on either – unless you bring up the slight chance of getting TSS (toxic shock syndrome) from a tampon but, other than that, neither one is better for you than the other.

It’s really a matter of preference. Personally, I’m a goes both way kind of woman. Usually I use tampons as they give me more freedom – but there are certainly days when I go with a pad.
It’s great to hear you are concerned about using the best products for your body! I never would have thought to ask this. And since you’ve asked, I have to tell you—aside from the risk of TSS from tampons—there really is no “healthier” choice. What is important is proper use and comfort. You should change your tampons ever 4-6 hours and pads every 2-4 hours. As for the comfort part, that is really up to you! Personally, I’m a tampon gal. Though pads have come a long way. When I first started it was more like wearing a diaper! Definitely not the case now!