The materials used to manufacture most of these pads are derived from the petroleum industry and forestry. The absorbent core is made from chlorine-bleached wood pulp. The absorbent core can be reduced to make slimmer
products with the addition of polyacrylate gels which sucks up the liquid quickly and holds it in a suspension under pressure.
The remaining materials are mostly derived from the petroleum industry; the cover stock used is polypropylene non-woven, with the leak proof barrier made from polyethylene film. Some of these materials are associated with some health problems in women.
One of the health problems is cervical cancer, which is believed to be caused by the chlorine compounds that contain the trace amount of organ chlorine-dioxin.
More on Sanitary Towel
A good sanitary towel is made up of 3 layers; which are the surface layer, Middle layer and base layer.
vSurface layer or 1st layer: This should be a cotton net surface with fast absorption.
vMiddle or 2nd layer: This should be air permeable with effective absorption agents, which can turn the absorbed liquid into a jelly-like state, to avoid backflow and sticky feeling.
vBase or 3rd layer: This should be made out of air permeable material as this would greatly reduce the heat between the sanitary towel and the body to create a dry and refreshing feeling.
Some of these sanitary towels can be contaminated by bacteria in the process of their production and even when in the market if not well packaged. A CAP’s test (Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) test) in 2002 found a high count of up to 11,000 contaminates, which is over 10 times the international safety standard
AIMS The aim of this research is:-
- To assess the sterility of sanitary towels.
- To compare the rate of microbial contamination of sanitary towels obtained from the supermarket with those obtained from the open market.
- To highlight the possible significance of such isolated organisms as regards health hazards.
- To make recommendations on control measures.