By the time most period-having people reach adulthood, the mystery of menstruation is all but squashed. After health class and a solid decade or so of bleeding, you'd think most folks would be masters of uterine details, but according to a new BuzzFeed video where women take a period quiz, that is not always the case.
Myths about menstruation abound. Hundreds of years ago, it was believed that period blood could cure leprosy. That's right, just a touch of the red stuff and your appendages would immediately stop falling off your body. At the same time, period blood was also thought to have the ability to kill crops and rust iron, so it hasn't always been viewed as a benevolent healing force. More recent period myths include the false notion that only women menstruate, and that if you have sex on your period, there is no way you can get pregnant. (I repeat: do not make that time of the month your only birth control, because it's definitely not equivalent to using a condom.)
Although the facts about menstruation are a lot less spicy and entertaining than some of said myths, it's still vital to be informed about what's going on down there. Here are five questions women are asked about their periods in this quiz that you might want to know:
1What Is Shed During Your Period?
Nope, we don't release random blood from our bloodstream or gobs of vaginal tissue every month, but the uterine lining aka the Endometrium.
2What Is Dark Red Or Brown Period Blood?
Many a period-haver has wondered: why the 50+ shades of red? Brown blood is just old blood, nothing more, folks.
3What Causes Cramps?
Ah, cramps, the bane of our bleeding existence. Apparently, it's the hormone Prostaglandins that triggers the uterus to contract and expel its lining — and cause all that wrenching below the belt.
4Can You Get Pregnant On Your Period?
Yes! A thousand times yes! It depends on your cycle if this can actually happen, but why risk it?