Menstrual Knowledge and Understandings of Normal and Extreme Bleeding: College Students’ Overestimation of the Typical Amount of Menstrual Blood

Breanne Fahs, Eric Swank

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Accurate biological information about menstruation is crucial for menstrual health literacy. A diverse group of students (N = 125) at a large southwestern US university estimated—by pouring liquid into containers—the amount of menstrual blood produced during an average menstrual period. Only 14% could give a relatively accurate estimate, whereas 55% overestimated by at least 65 ml. Further, 7% gave extreme overestimations of one liter or more. Gender and race did not impact accurate knowledge, but queer/pansexual participants and women’s and gender studies or social justice majors were significantly more accurate. Implications for health education and recognizing heavy bleeding are explored.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalWomen's Reproductive Health
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • health literacy
  • Menstrual health
  • menstrual knowledge: menstrual education
  • menstruation
  • women’s bodies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Maternity and Midwifery
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Reproductive Medicine

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