Getting Real About How to Deal with Your Period While Backpacking


Ladies, ever wanted to go on a camping/hiking trip, but were concerned that you may start your period on the course of the trip? While you could choose to pack pads and tampons, this is not the preferred option as it gets messy and gross, especially when it comes to storing the trash for the remainder of the trip. There are plenty of other easy alternatives when it comes to preparing for your period in times like these.

First, the easiest and most obvious way would be to skip your period with the pill. If you take both control and notice that your period is coming up at an inconvenient time, skip the placebo pills and start a new pack. Yes, it’s safe and doctor approved. This is safe because the “period” you have when you’re on the pill isn’t actually a real period. It’s technically “withdrawal bleeding,” caused by an absence of the hormones you’re taking while on birth control, so it’s safe to skip your period in this way long-term.

Another method would involve using a menstrual cup. These are flexible cups that collect blood so you can just pour them out, rinse, and replace. While you can also purchase disposable versions that can be packed and tossed, the most eco-friendly option would be to use a reusable cup. In means of disposing the blood from the cup, there are two options. Either bottle it until you find an appropriate trash receptacle, or dispose of it as you would any other human waste  – dig a cat hole at least six inches deep and 200 feet from water sources and bury it.

If you decide you would rather use tampons instead of the above options, try opting for applicator free tampons. Instead of using a plastic or cardboard applicator, you use your finger to insert them.

Make sure your hands are clean before inserting the tampon. While this method may not seem ideal, it is a lot easier when it comes to storing the waste. To store, keep them in zip top baggies or water bottles covered in duct tape, which both reinforces the plastic and keeps it opaque. In order to neutralize the smell, crushed aspirin or tea bags is highly recommended.


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