Sometimes the rules seem disruptive. It can be accompanied by heavy bleeding, nausea, cramps and intense fatigue. Others might not experience such extreme symptoms, but still feel tired or a little uneasy when they have their period. If they live in Spain, they may be able to take time off work as lawmakers are expected to pass a bill that gives people three days of menstrual leave every month, according to the BBC.
“It’s a wonderful concept because first and foremost it elevates menstruation in the public’s mind,” said Dr. Jennifer Lincoln, obstetrician-gynecologist and author of “Let’s Talk From Out There: An Obstetrician-Gynecologist Answers to all your burning questions…without making you feel embarrassed to ask,” TODAY said. “In society (menstruation) is something that happens to about half of the population and that’s something something worth (discussing) – not pushing under the rug or saying, ‘It’s your time of the month, manage it.'”
People with endometriosis, fibroids, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and bleeding disorders often experience severe pain and disruption during their period, making it difficult to work and perform daily tasks. Others suffer from premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), which is a more severe version of premenstrual syndrome. According John Hopkins. Menstrual leave gives people the grace to look after their health as they struggle with distressing symptoms.
“For some people, when they’re on their period, they’re not able to function to their full capacity. Right now a lot of them are being told to pull through,” Lincoln said. It shouldn’t be like that. If they need time off from work at our school, it should be a sign that they need to get treatment.
Encouraging people to overcome their symptoms and pain may mean that some do not seek help and begin to believe that excessive pain and bleeding is normal.
“If we’re able to change the narrative, we can help people feel empowered not to live that way,” Lincoln said. “When it comes to menstrual leave, that’s a really good way of saying that for the half of the population that menstruates, they deserve to be taken care of.”
Too often people don’t realize that pain or heavy bleeding can mean there are other health issues.
“We’ve normalized that periods are supposed to be painful and you’re supposed to be in a bad mood and so we’re sending the message – especially to young people just starting out – that this is your life now. Just deal with it,” Lincoln said. “By giving time off, I don’t think (it’s going to) trigger a period pandemic calling in sick every day for a week. I don’t think this is a lazy and easy solution. But it will really empower them.
If someone has to miss work for three or more days due to their period or PMS, this is helpful information they can share with their doctor and encourage them to investigate the causes. potential for such disturbances.
“I think it would change the conversation in this country about periods and what’s going right and what’s not,” she said.
The status of menstrual leave
If Spain passes its bill, it will join a rather small group of other countries that offer menstrual leave, which includes Japan, South Korea and Zambia, according to CNBC. Some companies, like the Indian company Zomato, offer menstrual leave. In the United States, New Jersey state legislators introduced a bill that would allow high school students to have excused absences for their periods.
“Those of us working on these issues in the assembly really want to focus not only on the health impacts but also on the social impacts to make sure that children, young girls, women, all our community are educated about menstruation and menstrual health,” New Jersey Congresswoman Sadaf Jaffer, who represents District 16, said today. , have an impact on everything around them, including the economy.”
While a bill will allow female students to take period leave, Jaffer and her colleagues have introduced other legislation to help tackle period poverty, which occurs when a person cannot afford to buy menstruation. menstrual products, such as sanitary napkins, tampons or menstrual cups. The proposed bill would allow people receiving Medicaid and SNAP to use those programs to purchase products while another bill would raise awareness of menstrual poverty, according to Featured New Jersey News.
According to the association Period equity, New Jersey is one of 24 states that have a “tampon tax,” which is a sales tax on menstrual products. Some states have no sales tax, which means no product is taxed, while other states have removed their tax on menstrual products. But even buying the supplies every month can get expensive.
“People just aren’t able to buy the products they need,” Jaffer said.
Another proposed bill would dedicate funds to screening and awareness for conditions such as endometriosis, fibroids and PCOS. This could have a big impact on the people of New Jersey.
“There is very disparate funding when it comes to reproductive health,” Lincoln said. “When you talk about things like endometriosis and fibroids, one in 10 people have endometriosis, and depending on your race, up to 80% of people can have fibroids. It affects huge populations and if people want thinking in terms of money, these issues cause people to lose their jobs, they lead to mental health issues, they lead to fertility issues.
Lincoln said funding reproductive health research now can be an economic boost later.
“All of these programs will eventually pay for themselves if you think about how much money we’re losing to the economy because of issues like menstrual disorders and menstrual poverty,” she said.
Jaffer said women make up only 35% of the state legislature, so sometimes reproductive health has been overlooked.
“That means that a lot of times women’s issues haven’t necessarily been front and center,” she said. “Women’s health in general is a priority for me.”
For Jaffer, she hopes that if this legislation passes, it will offer hope to New Jersey residents.
“It’s important to center women’s experiences and their health issues that for too long have been overlooked in research, policy and culture alike,” Jaffer said. “I’m really proud to be working with (my colleagues) and bringing these women’s health issues out of the shadows because these are things that we’re going to have to deal with and we want to make sure they get the support they need.”