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What Are Panty Liners for? Are They Actually Good for You?

The purpose of panty liners still remains a mystery not just for men, but for many women as well. Are panty liners just a well-marketed product with little to no purpose? If not, what are they for? Find out all about it in the article below.

What is a panty liner?

It is very common and a natural phenomenon in women to have some discharge during the day. It can make things uncomfortable, sometimes embarrassing and even damp, especially during workouts. A panty liner helps to maintain a moist free, fresh and clean feeling throughout the day. It works best if it is changed every 3-5 hours. There are simple ways to stay fresh and feeling feminine. Panty liners are great choices for women who wish to feel dry, fresh and confident every day.

A pantyliner is a thin absorbent pad for feminine hygiene. It is worn in the gusset of a female's panty to absorb vaginal discharge or light menstrual flow. Panty liners are basically defined as thin versions of pads that females wear inside their undies in order to prevent stains and keep their underwear clean. 

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Pantyliners are found in an assortment of shapes, portability options, sizes, varying from small, compact panty liners to large, protective panty liners created for heavy vaginal discharge and light period flow. Different styles of panty liners are designed to fit with thong undies. Disposable pantyliners are also designed which possess a sticky adhesive on the backside of the pad to be able to remain in appropriate position in the underwear. Some designs have 'wings' which wrap around the undies, offering additional stability.

Cloth pantyliners that are reusable are also available and come in a range of different colors, sizes, cloth materials, patterns, and absorbencies. These can be washed regularly and reused for a few years. These reusable panty liners are secured to the undies by wrap-around wings snapped together at the ends.

The real purpose of panty liners is to absorb everyday vaginal discharge, an unexpected light period flow, flow during the days when your periods are actually over but you still have little spotting and staining and post-intercourse discharge. Tampons, sanitary napkins, and mono-cups are awesome, but on several occasions, there is a risk of leaking. Panty liners serve as a reassurance, offering protection during a spontaneous discharge or unanticipated periods.

Liners are beneficial and handy since you do not feel them and notice them as much as sanitary pads and can feel more flexible and comfortable. Vaginal discharge is the yellowish white and sticky stuff that can be sometimes spotted in your undies. It is hard to wash off as after drying, it leaves stains and that is why wearing a panty liner is very helpful. 

It is also good to carry a pack of panty liners if you are passing through puberty (development of chest, growth spurt, hair and mood swings etc.) as spotting and unanticipated periods can be frequent.

The benefits of panty liners are:

  • Panty liners provide everyday protection from urine leakage, vaginal discharge, or an unexpected period. 
  • Panty liners possess breathable liners that keep the moisture away.
  • Panty liners are also helpful for those very last days of your menstrual period, when the discharge has essentially stopped but there is still some spotting that is either brown or pink. A panty liner does the trick when the flow is not heavy enough to use a tampon or a pad.
  • A panty liner keeps you and your panties clean
  • Panty liners are helpful in managing adult incontinence. Older people are prone to mild or moderate leakage. However, a strong product may be required.
  • Place the panty liner horizontally on the seat of your underwear if you are prone to “camel toe," If this is done properly, the layers will have you covered — literally!
  • Moms of new infants might use daily liners for managing light postpartum flow which they experience for a few weeks or sometimes months after childbirth.

Are panty liners bad for you? Potential dangers

Some important tips to be kept in mind if you regularly use a panty liner are as follows:

  1. Women’s panty liners can be worn before or after your menstrual periods, but not at the time of mensuration - they are not meant for soaking heavy discharge like the period blood.
  2. A panty liner rubs against the labia, possibly triggering redness and irritation and even itchy callus from the friction.
  3. Scented panty liners have chemicals that sometimes irritate sensitive tissues around the vagina.

How to use panty liners: simple tips

  • Just like pads, panty liners can be worn inside your panty and possess an adhesive strip on the bottom in order keep them in place. 
  • A panty liner should be placed in a vertical position and wrapped and secured around the seat of the underwear. 
  • A panty liner should be immediately changed if it becomes excessively moist. 
  • Avoid wearing panty liners during the night. If you do, make sure to change it as often as possible as it alleviates the chances of any infection.
  • Avoid wearing a scented panty liner, as it can trigger itchiness and discomfort on several occasions. Use unscented organic cotton products instead.
  • Use a panty liner when you are experiencing Postpartum bleeding, called lochia. The bleeding is not the same as the monthly periods. Lochia lasts up to 8 weeks after childbirth and it is harmless. 

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Farage, M. A., Enane, N. A., Baldwin, S., & Berg, R. W. (1997). Labial and vaginal microbiology: effects of extended panty liner use. Infectious diseases in obstetrics and gynecology, 5(3), 252-258.
Farage, M., Bramante, M., Otaka, Y., & Sobel, J. (2007). Do panty liners promote vulvovaginal candidiasis or urinary tract infections? A review of the scientific evidence. European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, 132(1), 8-19.
Giraldo, P. C., Amaral, R. L., Juliato, C., Eleutério, J., Brolazo, E., & Gonçalves, A. K. (2011). The effect of “breathable” panty liners on the female lower genital tract. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics, 115(1), 61-64.
Pontes, A. C., Amaral, R. L., Giraldo, P. C., Beghini, J., Giraldo, H. P., & Cordeiro, E. S. (2014). A systematic review of the effect of daily panty liner use on the vulvovaginal environment. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics, 127(1), 1-5.
Runeman, B., Rybo, G., Forsgren-Brusk, U., Larko, O., Larsson, P., & Faergemann, J. (2004). The vulvar skin microenvironment: influence of different panty liners on temperature, pH and microflora. Acta Dermato Venereologica, 84(4), 277-284.
Tzeghai, G. E., Ajayi, F. O., Miller, K. W., Imbescheid, F., Sobel, J. D., & Farage, M. A. (2015). A Feminine care clinical research program transforms women’s lives. Global journal of health science, 7(4), 45.
Williams, M. (1998). U.S. Patent No. 5,729,835. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

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