Ways to dispose of sanitary towels

Updated July 20, 2017

Sanitary towels are designed to be worn in a woman's underwear to absorb her menstrual flow. It is important to properly dispose of sanitary towels, as they contain bodily fluid that could pose a health hazard to others. Methods of disposal may differ according to where you are and what you have available.

Wrap it up

After removing a used sanitary towel from your underwear, it's important to roll it and then wrap it with whatever you have available. Often this is toilet paper, but if you have a wrapper from a new pad available, that may be used as well. Without touching the top of the napkin, roll it up completely. Then roll it again in whatever material you are using. Use enough toilet paper that it won't unroll completely. If you are using a wrapper from a new napkin, check to see if it has a piece of adhesive at the top. Aim to wrap in such a way that the adhesive will hold the package closed.

Rarely, you may find disposal bags in rest rooms for your convenience. It's still important to wrap the napkin, but using these disposable bags adds another layer of protection. Simply place the rolled and wrapped napkin in the bag and place the bag in the rubbish receptacle.

Rubbish receptacles

Choosing an appropriate rubbish receptacle is important. If you are in a public toilet, there will likely be a receptacle in the stall specifically for used sanitary towels. Using these receptacles will help protect other users of the rest room and the workers who empty the rubbish. Check that there is a bag or other liner in the receptacle before using it. If there are no receptacles specifically designated for sanitary towels, you may use the regular bin. At home, throw the wrapped pad away in the regular bin, being sure to empty it regularly. Be sure to thoroughly wash your hands after disposing of the sanitary towel.

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About the Author

Caitlin Kendall has been a nanny, copy editor, candy reviewer, website manager and IT support technician. She earned a degree in historic preservation from Mary Washington College and now freelances in Charlottesville, Virginia.