Period poverty is a term used to describe the lack of access to menstrual products
, adequate sanitation facilities, and relevant information about menstrual health management. It affects people who menstruate, particularly those living in low-income households or in poverty, as well as those who face other barriers such as social stigma, cultural taboos, and gender discrimination.
Period poverty can prevent individuals from participating fully in school, work, and social activities, as well as jeopardizing their physical and emotional health. People who cannot afford to buy menstrual products often resort to using ineffective and potentially harmful alternatives, such as rags, newspapers, or leaves, which can lead to infections and other health complications.
Moreover, menstrual stigma can further exacerbate the problem of period poverty by making it difficult for people to talk about their experiences and seek support. This stigma can also lead to discriminatory practices, such as exclusion from schools, workplaces, and public spaces during menstruation.
To address period poverty, it is important to provide access to affordable and safe menstrual products
, improve sanitation facilities, and promote education and awareness about menstrual health management. This can involve policy changes, such as providing free menstrual products in schools and public spaces, as well as addressing underlying factors such as poverty, gender inequality, and discrimination.