One in two women with autism says they don’t understand their periods

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  • About 700,000 people live with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in France.
  • 8000 children are born with autism each year.

According to a new survey commissioned by INTIMINA, women with autism find it more difficult to manage their periods compared to people with a neurotypical pattern.

annoying smells

One in two women with autism said they didn’t understand their periods, and one in three said it took up to four to five years to learn how to manage their cycles. 39% of respondents could not correctly identify the cervix on the image of the female reproductive system, and 83% found the sanitary protection to be difficult to use.

Additionally, 59% of respondents weren’t comfortable enough to talk openly with loved ones about their periods, and 16% had to figure out their cycles themselves. Because of their hypersensitivity, 1 in 3 autistic women (26%) also reported that the smells of menstrual products such as tampons, menstrual cups, and sanitary napkins bothered them.

Fears

Finally, more than 1 in 3 women with autism (38%) say premenstrual mood swings are among the top three premenstrual concerns. Besides mood swings, 42% of women with autism said they worried about heavy bleeding during their menstrual period, and 42% reported having menstrual cramps.

Do not hesitate to consult a doctor if simple measures such as hot water bottles or light exercise do not relieve period pain. Gynecologist Shri Datta concludes.

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