bacteria often

Fruits

Korean fruits are so frickin fresh. Ok actually, everything is so fresh here. I kid you not, the strawberries here have a completely different taste from strawberries in America. In the US, strawberries are usually tart and are sweeter if theyre overripe. Korean strawberries are sweet from the first bite, regardless of ripeness (their flavor is also kinda different).

I had boiled eggs for breakfast and I was surprised to find that the membrane film was super thick as was the eggshell. The yolk was also a vibrant yellow (not a trace of a dull grey). I’m pretty sure this indicates freshness and also good quality care for the chickens themselves.

Korean milk tastes so good! Usa has certain milk laws that basically gets them to nuke everything in it, including the good bacteria that you’ll often find in yogurts and stuff. So it has no flavor. But korean laws are much different (and I’m guessing their animals are well cared for) so the milk retains much of the good bacteria. It has a very rich roasted taste to it. As a result, milk products (like cream, smoothies, cakes) are also very delicious.

angelicuscadere  asked:

Hi, I've read that mouth to mouth contact between birds and dogs / cats can be deadly for the bird because of the bacteria in the dog/cat's mouth. What are the specifics of this interraction? Does this apply to mouth to mouth contact between birds and all mammals? Or is it only carnivorous mammals? Is mouth to mouth contact between humans and birds also dangerous? Does this also apply to reptiles who are not birds? Of course I'm not asking for the sake of human/sapient raptors smuttiness. ;)

I’m happy to answer this because I’m absolutely confident that you’re not asking for human/sapient raptor smut related reasons, because the last thing that humans would ever think of doing when meeting another sapient race is trying to have sex with it.

We have lots of information about the dangers of cat bites and cat scratches, because that’s two actions that this species does quite a lot. We have significantly less information about the dangers of human bites, especially about the dangers of human bites on non-human species. It would seem that, on average, our species just doesn’t tend to do that sort of thing.

There are two types of diseases you need to consider with mouth-to-mouth contact between two different species, or even two different species living in close proximity. Zoonotic diseases are diseases humans catch from non-humans. Anthroponotic diseases are diseases that non-humans catch from humans.

Understandably, far more attention has been paid to zoonotic diseases than to anthroponotic ones.

So, consequently, I don’t have any data about the relative dangers of a cat bite compared to a human bite on a lizard, for example. However I do know about the comparative anatomy and microflora of different species.

Cats, as a species, are very pointy. Their bite wounds are typically deep puncture wounds and their claws cause similar, but more shallow wounds. They also lick themselves fastidiously, and end up coating their claws in saliva. They also, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, lick their anus. So any bacteria hanging out at the end of the digestive tract will also find its way to the start of the digestive tract.

Humans rarely do this.

All animals have bacteria in their mouths. They differ by which species reside in the oral cavity. Usually each individual will have a mix of different bacterial species which will be representative of the local population, but not every individual in every group will have all the common types of bacteria.

Humans often have Streptococcus sp, Staphylococcus sp, Conynebacterium, lactobacilli, Fusobacterium and many, many others.

Bacteria isolated from cat bite wounds (actual infected wounds, not just their mouths) include most bacteria found in human mouths, though Staph and Streps are far less common, but also contain Pasturella. It is Pasturella, (usually P. multocida) which is usually a serious problem, and there are are numerous different serovars which cause different pathology in different species, including but not limited to: abscesses, fowl cholera, atrophic rhinitis and septicemia.

Different populations of hosts will have different populations of bacteria, and over time these bacteria will become host adapted and the host will build up a tolerance to the bacterial population. If you introduce a new individual who is not adapted to to the local bacterial population, they can succumb easily to infection. This is why quarantine is such a big deal for keepers of birds, amphibians and reptiles. Introducing a new strain of bacteria can devastate a population.

Note that cats often commonly have Bartonella henselae on their nails, the causative agent of Cat Scratch Fever, but this may not be relevant if your characters are not cats and are only performing mouth to mouth resuscitation and no smut whatsoever.

There is an article here about bacterial infections from bites of various species. It’s an interesting read, but it does seem to be P. multocida that’s the most concerning species. 

The article also tells us about bacteria cultured from the mouths of wild and captive Komodo Dragons. This doesn’t necessarily tell us which bacteria in their mouths might cause infection, just which are there. About 10%of hem have P. multocida, so that bacterial species may or may not be an issue in your story. At least, from the raptor’s point of view.

While oral bacteria depend on what an individual has been eating and is exposed to, if both species in question have similar microflora populations then there is probably not going to be a big risk, unless a wound is contaminated with saliva. Your sapient raptors may be at low risk with human interaction, though cats are probably still high risk. Cats typically decimate wildlife populations wherever they go.

A human indulging in mouth to mouth with a sapient raptor, however, should be concerned about two zoonotic diseases in particular.

Salmonella is a common infection of humans from handling reptiles and birds. Most species have this bacterium in their gut, and when it crosses into a species not adapted to that strain, infection can occur.

Psittocosis, aka Parrot Fever, if present in your world, should be a major concern. It’s transmitted by bodily fluid and inhalation of feather dander, so anyone in close proximity to infected individuals is at risk. In humans it has sometimes vague, sometimes dramatic clinical signs, and there are only a few types of antibiotics it responds to (tetracyclines being the most common). The causative agent is Chlamydophila psittaci and if anything sapient raptors might carry that happen to be a STD, this chlamydia organism is probably it.

Fowl Cholera and Psittocosis were both discussed way back here too.

But also keep in mind, sometimes we can’t predict which pathogens will jump into a species that has never encountered them before in their evolutionary history. We didn’t know that putting horses in proximity with Australian bats would result in Hendra virus transmission, for example. This is your reality, your rules. I can only provide an educated guess about which zoonotic and anthroponotic diseases might occur.

Disclaimer

ELI5: Getting sick from a 'bacteria' vs. 'virus'

Bacteria produce harmful chemicals as part of their life processes. They use up your body’s resources (like eating your sugar or even eating your cells) and spit out toxic waste. Sometimes that waste is specifically designed to protect the bacteria by killing your immune system cells that try to attack it. But it also just basically poops all up in your body, which causes some damage. The symptoms of bacterial infections are related to what waste products the bacteria produces and where the bacteria is living. Your body fights bacterial infections by basically eating them, along with some other toxic chemicals that destroy them.

Viruses hijack the DNA in your cells to make more of the virus. They invade the cell and tell it to stop doing whatever it’s doing that your body needs it to do, and instead all it does is manufacture more of that virus. Eventually, the cell dies - usually by literally exploding - when it fills up with copies of the virus. Those viruses go on to infect other cells. Viral symptoms are caused by your body’s own attempt to kill them, and by the deaths of the cells they’re infecting. Your body fights viruses also by eating them, but it’s harder because they’re a lot smaller and have special protein shells that disguise them as “totally not a virus don’t eat me you guys”.

For extra fun, there are also prion diseases! Prions are proteins that folded the wrong way. When properly-folded proteins come into contact with prions, they re-fold into the same wrong shape as the prion. Your body can’t do anything about it because although it’s folded wrong, it’s still a protein that’s supposed to be there. Proteins are the way your body communicates and accomplishes certain things, so folding them wrong can really muck-up what is supposed to happen. In the case of Mad Cow Disease, as more and more proteins turn into prions, your brain turns to mush and gets holes in it until you go crazy and die.

If you think of your body as a factory that builds cars: bacteria are like a drunk hobo sneaking into your factory and dumping empty wine bottles into the machinery so it breaks. Viruses are like a roomba wandered in and reprogrammed your factory to start making more factory-invading roombas instead of cars. Prions are like a weird European car showed up and crashed into one of your factory’s cars after it left the factory, and now they both keep crashing into other cars (which then go on to crash into more cars) and also they all keep crashing into your factory.

Also fungal infections. Fungi can’t produce their own food, so they steal yours. Often that means invading parts of your body to get to it, and dumping toxic waste like bacteria. In the factory, a fungus would be someone building a shed attached to your factory and stealing your power so your factory doesn’t have enough to run and dumping garbage into your factory.

Also also, parasites. Parasites do the same thing as bacteria, but they’re [often] multicellular, so they’re much larger. Instead of a bunch of them, it’s usually a few big ones (although sometimes also a lot of them). In the factory, a parasite would be like the mafia moving into your factory, breaking stuff, and punching you right in the kidneys (or more likely, in the intestines) while they steal your money.

Explain Like I`m Five: good questions, best answers.

HOW TO TAKE CARE OF OILY/ACNE PRONE SKIN TYPE

— THIS IS A HIGHLY REQUESTED POST —

Hi my loves! This is LEARNTOMAKEUP and I’m Valeria.♥

I have been receiving questions from you asking to tell you some tips for oily/acne prone skin to get ride of scars of pimples in your face. Follow this tips to get a clean, fresh and radiant skin. 

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO KNOW IF YOU DO OR DON’T HAVE OILY/ACNE PRO SKIN TYPE ANSWER THIS QUESTIONS BELOW TO DISCOVER IT.

Did you have a problem during puberty/teen years?
Do you wake up with an oily film on your nose or chin?
Does your foundation wear off within a few hours?
Do new products cause your skin to break out?
Does your skin breaks out during your monthly cycle?

If you said “YES” in more than 2 questions you have oily/acne pro skin.

You don’t need to worry at all, here I will give you the solution.  Trust me, we all have been there at some point of our lives so that’s why today I’m going to give you some tips and advice that you need to add in your routine.

1. STOP TOUCHING YOUR FACE

Your hands have oil, dirt, bacteria, germs so it isn’t good to rub your face. Face is sensitive part of our body  and the oil on your hands can grind/rub into your face from touching it can cause your pores to clog  even acne also it can cause irritation. If you already have acne touching your face constantly will just spread the bacteria of current acne. 

2. KEEP YOUR FACE CLEAN

It’s important to wash your face twice daily to remove impurities, dead skin cells, and extra oil from your skin’s surface. Washing more often than twice daily is not necessarily better; it may do more harm than good. Use warm water and a mild facial cleanser.  Gently wash it with your clean hands or a very soft cloth. Always rinse well, and then dry your face with a clean towel.

3. USE OF MAKEUP  

The makeup you use has a big impact on the health of your skin. If do love makeup you don’t have to stop wearing it, you just need to look for products that say “non-comedogenic” on the label. This means that the product is specifically designed not to clog your pores.  However, you have to wash it off at the end of the day or you will break out even more if you sleep without cleaning your face . If possible, choose oil-free cosmetics without added dyes and chemicals. 

4. FOUNDATION FOR ACNE-PRONE SKIN 

The best foundations for oily skin fight shine instead of adding to it. Find an oily skin foundation and set your foundation with a mineral powder. If you need to use more foundation than usual to achieve full coverage, apply light layers, letting them fully set before you apply the next one. 

5. GREEN CONCEALER

After foundation take your green concealer and using a brush start applying it in the blemishes in your face.  Green concealers neutralize red zones on your face, like blemishes or red spots. Use green concealer to better cover up acne and camouflage your skin imperfections.

6. CLEAN YOUR BRUSHES 

Use clean makeup brushes or sponges to apply your products. This makes it much easier to blend your makeup for a more natural finish, and keeps you from touching your face with your fingers, which can harbor excess oils and bacteria. Wash your brushes often  at least two or three times per week, depending on how often you use the brush.

7. EAT HEALTHY

Experts agree that maintaining a healthy diet can go a long way in preventing breakouts. Also, you may not know it but you might have a small allergy to some foods (dairy is a common one) which can spark an immune system response staring with acne or skin problems. Reducing the amount of dairy you eat, along with unhealthy foods like greasy burgers, french fries, chips and soda will undoubtedly help eliminate your breakouts. 

8. EXERCISE


Exercising daily will not only help you look and feel better but it will also help reduce the frequency of your breakouts. Working out increases the blood flow through the body which will keep your skin looking healthy and radiant. Plus, when you workout, you perspire more regularly, which means you eliminate dirt, toxins, and chemicals a lot more efficiently.

9. DRINK WATER 

Drinking water not only hydrates your skin but it eliminates all of the unhealthy toxins from your body–some of which may have been the cause of your earlier breakouts. Consuming at least 8 glasses a day will keep your skin looking radiant and glowing everyday. Combining healthy hydration with regular exercise will prevent breakouts by eliminating excess toxins and oils via perspiration. Your skin will become healthier, less oily, less dry, and less prone to pimples as a result.

As always I’m open to suggestions and opinions so if you need information about an specific topic don’t forget to ask! Don’t be afraid to ask for help, if you want me to answer privately, I will do it. You can leave all your questions here

If you found helpful this post please like or reblog it so I know that you want me to publish more tips & tricks about makeup.

Last but not least, if you are a makeup lover or if you want to join our family follow LEARNTOMAKEUP to read our posts and stay updated ♥

Love you all, Valeria.

How to get rid of acne - updated - updated again

…or at least control it

Because I’ve had a lot of experience in this area and I feel like getting this all out. Right now.

updated announcement: if you are allergic to salicylic acid, your life sucks, don’t read this.

also when I say “natural” obviously I mean the ingredients, not the label on the bottle.

Some special snowflakes were being little shits about this, so there you go.

1. Firstly, figure out if it’s caused by food. Most common cause is dairy, however eggs, gluten, peanuts, seafood and soy could also be your problem.

Stop consuming all dairy for a full week and see if your skin gets better. If not, try eggs. Then gluten. BUT while you are cutting one thing out, be sure you eat the other items, otherwise you won’t know what specifically is causing it. And yes, it CAN be a combination. So if you notice your skin clears up a fair amount after cutting out dairy, after a few weeks, try cutting out eggs or gluten and see if it gets even better.

2. Use a gentle cleanser. Don’t use anything that is meant for acne. This will just hurt you in the end. You don’t want to attack your SKIN, only the little assholes on top of it. I use a vegetable oil based soap bar on both my body and face, it’s literally the gentlest thing you CAN use. Tons of dermatologists recommend Cetaphil. It’s not natural so I don’t use it, but it works great for lots of people. The point is, it’s very gentle.

3. Use a gentle moisturizer. Especially if it’s made for sensitive skin, which you totally have if you break out regularly. I love aveda’s all-sensitive line. If you have dry patches from combination skin, get a heavier moisturizer, and JUST use it on those patches. (edit: don’t forget natural stuff like olive oil and coconut oil as well!!)

4. Get 2.5% salicylic acid treatment. You can use it as a spot treatment for a while, and after your skin is used to it, you can just mix it in with your moisturizer at night.

5. Tea tree oil. A huge cause of acne is from bacteria. Tea tree oil comes from the leaves of specific trees that grow in Australia. It kills bacteria naturally. You can use it for freaking everything from acne to cuts to fungus. Okay. LEARN TO LOVE THE SMELL. You will when you see what it does for you. I use it so much, when I smell it, I feel like I’m home. No joke.

Apply it all over your body and face with a cotton ball, wherever you break out. Especially on any areas you also sweat on. Also, if you work out regularly, apply some BEFORE your work out and you definitely won’t break out from it. Though you still need to shower afterwards. Oh, and never use the same cotton ball from your face on your body and vice-versa.

edit: some people can be sensitive to full strength tea tree oil, however I’ve never experienced any sensitivity myself.

6. Retin-a cream. I’ve not had success with it, but a lot of former acne-sufferers swear by it. Give it a shot! Do your research first. People say it lessens oil production, too.

7. Cleaning. Think about the things that touch your skin on a daily basis. Pillowcases, blankets, makeup brushes, etc. These are things you must wash often! Bacteria is not your face’s friend!!

8. If all else fails, and you’re a lady who is mentally mature enough, go on the birth control pill! It’s not natural and we’re probably slowly killing ourselves with hormones, but it will lighten your period, lesson or eliminate cramps, improve your skin, and just sorta regulate everything. Make sure you get on low-dose, because regular-dose will NOT make your skin better, and low-dose is just as effective at preventing pregnancy. You HAVE to take it at the SAME EXACT TIME, EVERY DAY. So don’t screw that up.

9. Accutane is always the last resort. In fact, I would argue against it every time. Try everything a million times. Accutane will destroy you.

updated

10. Exfoliating. It’s important for everyone, but especially for people with acne. You need to get rid of dead skin cells or they will sit on top and clog your pores and bleh. If you only get mild break outs, you can use a wash cloth or exfoliating glove, and gently rub your face in a circular motion in the shower. Do it a few times a week. Don’t waste your money on exfoliating washes/scrubs, just use your normal, gentle cleanser.

If your acne is red and angry, you need a chemical exfoliating agent. DO NOT use anything rough or harsh on your face or you will just made it redder and angrier. Go for a BHA (salicylic acid) exfoliant. It will probably be a bit drying, so moisturize, moisturize!

11. Don’t wash your face more than twice a day. In fact, try switching to once a day! My skin started producing a lot less oil when I started only washing my face at night. In the morning I either just splash some cold water on it, or exfoliate in the shower (no soap), then towel dry and follow up with tea tree oil & aveda all-sensitive moisturizer.

additional notes:

I’ve noticed that my skin produces less oil when I eat bananas regularly. Huh.

Fruit/honey etc masks are a waste of time, JUST EAT THE FOOD INSTEAD. Though cucumber slices feel awesome sometimes.

A healthy diet, rich in colorful veggies and fruit will do wonders for your skin, hair and nails. Also, a daily gummy vitamin never hurt anyone.

Most cosmetics made these days won’t make you break out. It’s honestly pretty rare now. But you NEED to wash it ALL off, every night. If you get lazy sometimes, buy some Burt’s Bees facial cleansing cloths and keep them in your bathroom for those nights when you just DGAF.

Olive oil is the world’s best makeup remover. It’s cheap, it’s good for your skin, AND IT WORKS. Don’t buy that chemical crap. …just be sure to wash it off afterwards.

Don’t use benzyl peroxide products. They might work now, but the after effects of such harsh products will start showing in a few years. Also, if you combine them with salicylic acid, it can have a significant burning effect. So uh, don’t do it.

If you are a smelly sweating person, apply tea tree oil to your underarms before using deodorant. The smell is caused by bacteria, after all.

…kay I think I’m done.

edit: i’m not done!!

Where you get acne says a lot about the cause

1 is usually caused by stress

2 is usually caused by problems like not enough water, not enough sleep, lack of vitamins etc

3 is usually caused by food. this is where you get those horrible cystic zits that never go away.

4 is hormonal. almost all of us break out there during our favorite time of month.

edit: Yo there was one person who said this map was bogus, but absolutely, the mouth and chin IS where you get the most hormonal zits, and the lower cheeks ARE where you get food related shit.

What Is Life?

by Matthew Francis, Mosaic Science

“Why would NASA want to study a lake in Canada?”

Three different border guards asked me variations on that question, and while they ultimately let me pass, it was obvious they didn’t understand. Why is NASA interested in a lake in Canada? And what business is it of mine?

As exotic environments go, Pavilion Lake in British Columbia is rather ordinary. Certainly it’s remote – the closest major city is Vancouver, a long drive away over the mountains. The closest towns are light dustings of houses over the dry slopes, and the road winds for dozens of kilometres of empty desert country between them. The lake itself lies along a paved highway, and from the road it doesn’t look different to any other modestly sized mountain lake in western North America.

But below the surface, the bottom of Pavilion Lake is dotted with something resembling coral reefs: domes and cones and weird shapes much like artichokes. These are not corals, though, which are colonies of tiny animals: they are rock formations called microbialites, made by and coated in cyanobacteria. Sometimes misleadingly referred to as ‘blue-green algae’, these bacteria probably even made the rocks they live on, absorbing nutrients from the water and leaving stone behind. Like plants, they live on sunlight, and they thrive in shallow waters down the steep underwater slope to the point where sunlight fades to gloom.

Keep reading

2

Blood snow

Science fact: blood/watermelon/red snow is caused by Chlamydomonas nivalis, a cryophilic species of algae that becomes concentrated in the melt pockets of summer alpine snow near coastal Alaska. Most people try to avoid it when melting snow for drinking water. The algae itself isn’t toxic, but there are often other bacteria eating Chlamydomonas nivalis that aren’t particularly friendly for humans.

Lynx Peak, Alaska

Oh my god… the ENTIRE comment section of that article about how Nepal still maintains menstruation is taboo and deliberately ostracises women for it (in dangerous conditions)…

Is FULL of men complaining.

“What about men?”

“Well I was circumcised once, so where’s my justice?”

“Um, the feminazis got to this one…”

“Women are just complaining.”

“Pffft, this is bullshit. The only reason this isn’t hapening in the US is because of better sanitation. This article is just bitchng about how ‘mean’ men are.”

Ad infinitum.

Like… are you serious?

ARE YOU SERIOUS?

-

Little kids, and women… physically banished from their homes to lie in tiny, ramshackle ‘sheds’ even during monsoon season. With no protection, and a known higher risk of being raped in the night because no one will protect your ‘impure’ self…
Believing that if they do go into a building, or touch someone (as they are ‘impure and full of disease’ at this point), all people/animals in the building will die, the gods will curse them, and their hands will become deformed.

…this is happening now.

This is terrible.

This was clearly made up by some fucking idiot man a whole bunch of years ago, and no one thought to ask the women how it worked… 
According to legend some dude god fucked up, and made periods to atone for his sin (bc of fucking course the punishment wouldn’t go on him, or the dudes… but the ladies who already put up with enough shit as it is). 

In the 2010s, a young lady who is on her way to university and has educated herself on biology/menstruation… was told by a priest that the reason her father fell ill… was because she touched him on her period.
Like… seriously. Just because the doctors in a country with low medial knowledge couldn’t work out what a dude had, clearly it was because his young daughter had angered the clan gods by touching him… while on her period.

Fuck off.

-

And yet every dudebro ever has to come running into the comment section to talk about how gross periods are, how this article is clearly biased towards women/what about men?, complaining that there isn’t enough male support for these situations, that it’s a good system why not implement it elsewhere, pointing out women are ridiculously emotional on their periods so why not?, others saying that it makes sense to put emotional teenagers in a shed for about a week… clearly ignoring the high risk of rape they face… etc.

What kind of boring, self-righteous life do you freaking live… if you have to seek out articles about women and the issues they face… just to run to the comments and whine about how this article was written by feminazis who don’t understand how hard it is to be a MAN in this world?

Really? 

REALLY?

Where’s that bird tweet when I need it… “i am feel uncomfortable when not talking about me?!”

Fuck off, and take your fedora with you.

.

There are whole countries where this is  huge problem, where women are dying due to infection because they cannot get sanitary items for this time… because there is no education to say ‘This is normal, take your bullshit male hoodoo beliefs away from here and fuck off while we educate these people’. 

And yes, it needs to be talked about, support actioned and funded, services provided so that there is the potential for proper education about these things to kill off these silly old taboos and beliefs.

You think it didn’t happen in Britain? In America?
Just a century ago idiot men thought women couldn’t ride on trains because the uterus would fly out of their bodies if they accelerated past 50mph.
All medical knowledge was based on white male anatomy, so when it came to women, it was just assumed that any and all maladies were uterus-based. 
Seriously, look it up, its both hilarious and horrifying how fucking wrong they were… (and female slaves/POC suffered so fucking much for any of these idiots to learn more/the reality of how the female body and reproductive cycle worked).

You know what changed? Science. Education. The suffering of slave women.
There was a huge push from women, who slowly gained more legal rights, to have these bullshit ideas overturned; women taking up medical positions and being able to provide better care to female patients… etc.

But white women -who did fight incredibly hard and put up with a lot of shit, we’re never going to dispute it was an uphill battle- did have a bit more of a leg to stand on to start with… than their POC counterparts in other parts of the world.
There was some biblical bullshit about periods/childbirth being Eve’s punishment for eating the apple, but for the most part that kind of got filed under bullshit; the same way the idea of isolating women for their entire period did.
[Or the batshit insane part about whenever you had sex, or finished menstruating, you had to take a white dove and a black/grey dove to a priest… who would cut them in half to sacrifice them to god as an atonement for your sin. I notice that no one’s kept that up, predominantly because the RSPCA would sacrifice YOU, for being an animal-torturing asshole].

Because in a modern age, the majority of people recognise the bible is more a collection of moralistic fables used to teach right, wrong, piety and devotion… than an absolute truth that must be mindlessly obeyed.

Science and reason, medicine and logic… they’ve been developed and come a long way since then. Most importantly, we have biology… it tells us how the body works and how the majority of diseases/disorders/functions and systems work.

There is still the stigma that females are over-emotional due to their menstrual cycle (a remnant of back when doctors believed EVERY disorder plaguing women from headache to organ failure and depression, were results of having a uterus), but generally only dickheads say stupid things about the situation.
Probably because they don’t know that during menstruation, the body experiences higher levels of testosterone than any other time during the month… which means that any emotional instability is, ironically, due to the fact they are at a point in their cycle where they are most like a man.

How would you like it if your entire opinion was voided because you had ‘too much testosterone to be rational, it makes you too emotional’? 
Also, only some women experience heightened moods, or mood swings; it is usually incredibly difficult to tell someone is on their period, so no… the stereotype is a load of crap.

-

What is a period?

Basically, three weeks out of four per month… your uterus is merrily decorating the inner uterine walls. If an egg should be fertilised during ovulation, then it will (most of the time) attach to the uterine lining, fuse, and begin the duplication of cells that may result in an embryo (but not always).

However, if there is none, then the uterus goes into rage mode.
The uterus begins, often 2-3 days prior to the period, to contract/spasm and cut off the blood supply as it shreds the internal lining it had prepared the weeks previously.
Which is often a cause of cramping; though some women also experience intense abdominal/back/spine pain, muscle cramping in other areas, migraines, nausea and/or vomiting, dizziness and/or fainting spells, black outs, dissociation, low immune system (nothing is worse than your period and a cold or fever), and various other symptoms that can be exacerbated by existing disabilities or medical conditions.

A period, is not like needing to pee, or take a shit.
There is no ‘holding it in’ or ‘telling your body to just knock it off there isn’t a bathroom for miles’. Blood, and other biowaste (uterine lining) is coming to just randomly start slipping out whenever the fuck it feels like it.

If you are wearing undies you particularly like? Too bad.

It is going to come, and keep coming, until it is done.

‘Just use a tampon’ doesn’t cut it.
Tampons are actually high-risk, but they don’t really advertise that.
Tampons originated when nurses in one of the world wars began using the ‘bullet-hole wound staunching tubes’ to deal with their periods; as they were more effective. And they are, to an extent.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to dispel a rather stupid male myth about tampons:

Myth: Inserting a tampon is like a tiny cotton dildo being in there all day.
Reality: If you insert the tampon correctly, you will not be able to feel it’s presence. If you insert a tampon and can still feel it/feel it move, it is not in place and you need to adjust it or your clothes will suffer.
Is there anything erotic about it? Nope. 

See, the problem with tampons (apart from public misconceptions about how they’re tiny cotton dildos) is that they are dangerous.
They’re the leading cause of Toxic Shock Syndrome… which makes all your organs shut down, and kills you in most cases. 


How? Well… see, the reason the old uterine lining is leaving your body… is the same as why you pee, it’s waste product. Putting a tampon in the flow-way to catch the blood and other detrius is okay, in the short term (unless you are hyper sensitive, in which case it can put the menstruator at risk just using them).

It is effectively blocking the path, and when you block up waste… what happens? Bacteria build up. Often caused by leaving the item in too long (over 4hours, max.)
[This can also happen if a woman removes a tampon, but not all of the item dislodges. Needing medical intervention.]

This can send your body into Toxic Shock Syndrome… which has proven fatal in the past. So it is Imperative that people are aware of how long they’ve had a tampon in, change it regularly and NEVER sleep with one in (get overnight pads or whatever works for you).

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Pads, although considered the safer option, also have inherent issues.
Some people do have a heightened sensitivity to them which can cause discomfort, infection or rashes/other issues for them.

What is a pad?
A pad is a containment device that attaches to the underwear, in the crotch region. It is ovular in shape and length depends on the brand/type of pad used.
Now, a key concern of pad-wearers is the damn thing moving about (as they are wont to do, if you move every sightly, walk, run, participate in sports, do anything other than remain motionless for 3-7 days).

Some come with ‘wings’ for this very purpose; wings are two small tabs attached to the main design that allow for the pad to be placed in the crotch of the underwear, and then a tab from each side is attached to the external part of the underwear’s crotch, to fasten it in place. Not always effective, but usually.

Pads catch the blood and waste product, and make disposal easier.
However, everyone is different and may require anything from light flow, tiny pads, to heavy-flow/overnight pads… and anything inbetween.

Period pads MUST be changed once every four hours (like tampons) except for overnight brand pads, which can last 8 hours.
UNLESS it is a heavy flow, wherein you may need to change them more regularly.

How do you know? You may ask, my non-uterus-having friends…
YOU KNOW. YOU KNOW the feeling. There is no denying it, or forgetting it’s there when you need to switch it out. You know.

Pads left too long can develop infection, specifically a UTI (Urinary tract Infection)/you may know it as ‘peeing fire/everything is agony when I urinate’, or in some cases Toxic Shock Syndrome -because it is a device holding significant waste in an enclosed space, sometimes on hot humid days, for a significant amount of time, esp. if not changed regularly.

So it has a risk factor too.

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The worst part is how flipping expensive both options are, per pack.

*Tampons also come in a wide variety of sizes and flow-options.

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There are alternate options, such as the DIVA cup… and a range of period-regulating or negating birth control options. Such as one of the BC Pills (many available, but expensive), Deprovera (Sp? An injection in the booty once every three months that they often use for military personnel due to effectiveness; however, has been known to cause opposite effective in some women -multiple/heavier periods) and several others you may want to google (or see your GP about).

But even as you look over these options and think, “wow, that’s awful” you also have to remember the other side effects (mentioned above) like illness, cramping, nausea, etc.

Most can be regulated by panadol/basic painkillers and heatpacks, but some women have to seek medical attention or be hospitalised during their periods due to the severity of their menstruation. 
Especially persons who are born with multiple uteri, which means their period can cause excruciating agony for up to 14 days a month (2 weeks/fortnight). 

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Now that you know all of this… I want you to remember that these are the safest methods of period-control we have in the first world. These are expensive, but generally available to most people (although if the goddamn government would subsidise them and give them out, even those on the poverty line and homeless persons could have supplies for when it hits).

There are other countries that don’t.
People die of infection because they substitute leaves, moss, old rags, for pads (because even those that are available if there is no stigma, are too expensive or not seen as a priority compared to food or water). Old rags seems alright, yes? But hey, it’s the one rag… in some places you can’t come out until late at night when no one can see you, to wash it.. not in the clean water, but dirty ricer water, a puddle… it’s not going to dry before you have to use it again.

These infections can turn deadly because it is a sensitive area.

The same way there is a huge emphasis on telling people with penises they HAVE to (carefully, with non-scented soap) wash UNDER the foreskin to prevent infection. Gangrene of the phallus just doesn’t seem like a lot of fun (or UTIs, etc). 

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So now think about the situation again.

Little girls, grown women, living in shitty sheds out in the cold, the rain, exposed, with no proper supplies… experiencing all of the above symptoms without panadol and no support. No knowledge of what is happening, or if something’s normal or not (and if it isn’t, who the hell do they turn to?).

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Being invalidated, your opinion/voice/thoughts/existence/etc. is frustrating, and needs to stop.

But the reality is that having your period in a place like a first-world country, does not directly place you in danger; not in the same way women in other countries are.

As seen in Nepal, and other countries where women and girls are deliberately segregated… treated like they’re an abomination, placed in dangerous situations because of incorrect, male-driven cultural beliefs.
If you do not have a uterus… you really shouldn’t have the right to make assumptions or beliefs about it; because you don’t GET it.

What if something goes wrong and these women/girls need medical assistance during this time? Will anyone touch them? Help them? Unlikely.
What if they are raped? Does the shame go to the asshole who did it? No.
Will anyone help her, or wait until the period stops?
What if they have a condition that makes menstruation difficult or dangerous (such as anemia) and REQUIRE hospitalisation (because birth control is difficult to get/possibly taboo in these countries despite their effectiveness)?

On the overall, some people are joking about sending teenaged girls off to ‘sheds’ (and let’s be clear, they’re not tin constructions… they’re rudimentary sticks with an almost thatch roof on the bloody things that a strong wind can take out) for a ‘week of peace’. For one, shut the fuck up.
They are in danger of everything, why? For the sake of some bullshit ma-driven belief… and you want to make it a joke.

There are governmental edicts in Nepal banning the use of these bullshit sheds/isolation periods, but a) they’re doing it anyway in remote areas, and b) as you can see it’s just changing the stigma into something more ridiculous because proper education was not implemented alongside the ban.

What is needed is people from the areas affected to be trained in matters of biology, specifically menstruation, and funded/sent out to different areas to educate people. Point out that hey, the taboo is a load of shit based on some ancient dudeian guesswork about how the whole period thing works. 

Knowledge IS power, and no, it won’t change everyone’s beliefs overnight… but it does give girls a chance to be understood and to understand their own bodies/that they do not have to be ashamed of their natural cycle.

And if someone could point out the whole ‘gods will punish you for daring to be female and have a period’ thing is a load of crap… that would be fantastic.

This is what’s actually needed. Education, and a concentrated effort to overthrow the stigma/stereotypes/belief in this taboo that’s really a cute little code for oppressing women based on ignorance.

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What it doesn’t need is you being a whiny little baby in the comments, or downplaying it because it’s not happening to you. Newsflash: it’s not ABOUT you. Why is this so hard for people to comprehend…?

You know you’re supposed to grow out of the egocentric stage when you’re 8-10years old, right? Learn to see things from an alternate perspective, empathy, learn to be a decent human being, etc.

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So, for the sake o whatever gods you believe in or don’t… get a life.
Because if you have to spend hours of your life tracking down articles targeted to female-specific (uterus-having person-specific) articles, JUST to bitch about how it’s not about men… then you clearly don’t have much going on. 

Get up, go do something useful.

And remember, there are 7+ billion people on this planet who aren’t you, who are living entirely different lives, and some of them need help/support. 
How about you acknowledge that, and work on finding a way to assist them… rather than throwing your middle-class white dude self a pity party?

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For further questions about menstruation, ask.

It’s not mysterious, it’s not great fun, but it’s not something to be ashamed about either.

Hand Sanitizer

I have already described how non antibacterial soap does not kill germs but merely suspends them in water so they can be rinsed off. Moreover, many antibacterial soaps only keep bacteria from multiplying and often do nothing to viruses. Alcohol kills germs by rapidly drying and in the process actually destroying the bacteria and viruses in the process. Moreover unlike antibacterial agents alcohol does not lower the effectiveness of other antibacterial agents leading to super germs because its action is mechanical in nature actually pulling the microorganisms apart physically.

Alcohol can be an irritant and a drying agent leading to chapped or dry skin if used frequently. Gel type sanitizers reduce this effect by adding aloes to the gel. They can be expensive if you use a lot of the stuff. All sanitizer is is alcohol and gel made from  carbomer and triethanolamine the same ingredients found in cheap hand moisturizing gels. To make your own all you have to do is buy some generic aloe gel and add upto 60% rubbing alcohol (ethyl works best) more or less depending on your skin sensitivity and dryness. The resulting gel is about 1/3 the cost of Purcell and can be adjusted to your skin type.

This gel takes 15 seconds to kill all the surface germs so rub thoroughly for at least this long covering the entire surface to be sanitized.