W1 Activity: Menstruation

My definitions of health and illness are pretty similar to those that were discussed in the lecture video.  I consider “healthy” to mean that you are not sick, as in you do not suffer from a disease or illness, and  I consider “illness” to be something that negatively affects your body and health for a period of time.  For the “criteria” I used to define these, I tried to define the words in a way that would relate to people in my life.  My cousin and aunt suffer from thyroid disease, and that is something that they will forever have to take medication for.  On the other hand, I had bronchitis a while back, and that was an illness, as even though it negatively affected my health at the time, I was able to take antibiotics and recover from it.

I do not think menstruation should be considered an illness.  Even though it takes it’s toll on your body every month, it is something that even healthy women get.  Illnesses are considered to be unhealthy, but it’s healthy for a woman to get her period.  Also, illnesses tend to be caused by viruses or bacteria, and those are what lead to the side effects of nausea or fever.  Even though menstruation can cause symptoms such as nausea, it is due to hormonal shifts, and is totally natural.  Therefore, I do not think it should be considered an illness.

I do think that anxiety should be considered an illness.  A lot of people who struggle with anxiety often feel like others think that what is going on is “just in their head.”  Therefore, I think it is important for anxiety to acknowledged as an actual mental illness so that it will be easier for people to seek the help they need.  Often, anxiety flares up for people in certain situations, (such as school, social events, or driving),  and it does negatively affect the mind for a period of time.

One thought on “W1 Activity: Menstruation

  1. I agree with your post, I believe that menstruation isn’t an illness but something a women’s body natural goes through when developing over time. But I think that in some cultures getting your period is viewed as being ill or contaminated during that time.
    When doing some research on the topic I found that in different cultures getting your period have different meanings within different communities. In Niger a woman is viewed as tainted during her period and they aren’t allowed to pray or fast during this time. The women are also not allowed to prepare food or collect water. In multiple areas of Africa cloth was used as protection. They were washed everyday but the biggest problem that arose from these cloths was that they didn’t always fully dry so it was easy for them to become infested with bacteria. In other areas getting your period is seen as a time of purification. I also read that in japan women cant hold traditional male jobs because menstruation causes imbalance. In Bolivia girls are encouraged to keep pads unseen and out of the trash and are even lead to believe that it can be lead to cancer. In different parts of the world women are perceived in many different ways during their time of the month but I feel like getting your period is seen in such a negative light that it mine as well be seen as having an illness or a disease.

    Nicholas Kristof “A Biological Ritual, Experienced Through Different Cultures.” . June 27, 2011. Accessed July 10, 2016. http://kristof.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/06/27/a-biological-ritual-experienced-through-different-cultures/?_r=0.

    Goldberg, Eleanor. “All The Inconceivable Ways Women Deal With Their Periods Worldwide.. And How To Help.” The Huffington Post. July 14, 2015. Accessed July 10, 2016. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/07/14/menstruation-myths_n_7495568.html

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