Difficult access to menstrual products in developing countries: A persistent injustice

A problem for local populations and travelers

Access to feminine hygiene products is a problem that is not new and which we should look into a little more, awareness is necessary on the subject. Indeed, in many developing countries, women do not have access to sanitary protection, or they are not able to buy them due to their high cost.

This situation has devastating consequences for the health, education and autonomy of women, who are often forced to turn to makeshift methods such as using cloths or leaves to manage their periods.

Local populations are obviously the most affected by the phenomenon, but this is also the case for women who travel.

Access and cost problem:

Women in developing countries face significant barriers in accessing sanitary protection. In many areas, feminine hygiene products are not available in local stores, forcing women to travel long distances to obtain them. The high prices of feminine hygiene products are even more of an obstacle to obtaining them. They are sometimes even forced to find less hygienic and potentially dangerous alternatives.

Impact on women’s health:

Lack of access to sanitary protection can have serious consequences for women's health. By using makeshift methods, such as cloths or sheets, women may be exposed to infections and other complications.

These are all situations that can also lead to unpleasant odors, stains and leaks, making women feel uncomfortable about their periods. And we know how this is not a, basic, pleasant time.

Impact on the education of young girls:

Lack of access to sanitary protection can also have an impact on girls' education. Many girls in developing countries miss school during their periods because they do not have adequate sanitary protection.

This can have long-term consequences on their professional future.

Possible solutions :

There are several possible solutions to improve women's access to sanitary protection in developing countries. One such solution is raising awareness and breaking taboos surrounding menstruation, which can help normalize the use of feminine hygiene products.

Furthermore, in recent years, in Western countries, we have noticed that topics around periods and ecological alternatives such as menstrual panties or menstrual swimsuits are becoming more and more common and that is an excellent thing.

Today, there are government programs and non-governmental organizations working to provide free or low-cost sanitary protection to women in the most affected regions. We also plan to participate in this movement in the form of donating menstrual swimsuits.

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