4 Femtech Innovations Demystifying and Normalizing Menstruation

FemTech is at the forefront of providing effective solutions to menstrual challenges, and the efforts to normalize and destigmatize menstruation are paving the way for the democratization of women’s healthcare.

Even though roughly 300 million people worldwide menstruate on any given day, a lack of resources for, education about, and attention to menstrual health continues to create serious challenges for menstruating individuals. This is particularly true for marginalized communities. Fortunately, the emerging FemTech market and the proliferation of FemTech products may be the solution needed to bring more awareness to menstrual health.

HOW DOES FEMTECH AFFECT HEALTHCARE IMPROVEMENTS?

FemTech has created menstruation-related research opportunities that otherwise would not have existed. Because menstruation has historically been excluded from research studies, there are significant gaps in the overall understanding of menstrual health. As a result, there are inadequate healthcare options for those who menstruate, especially if they struggle with painful, disruptive conditions such as premenstrual syndrome, menstrual cramps, endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome, menorrhagia, or iron-deficiency anemia. The menstrual pain that up to 90% of women report experiencing, for example, is often dismissed as “normal” rather than recognized as an opportunity for science, medicine, and menstruation technology to improve lives.

FemTech can also help by making access to menstrual products and experiences fair and normal for all. Because menstrual products are often taxed as luxury items, they may be unaffordable for low-income and marginalized populations. Far too many schools and workplaces don’t provide adequate facilities for managing menstruation, which can cause menstruating individuals to miss out on education or chances to earn money.

Leaders in the FemTech movement are already taking up these and other challenges — and they’re being rewarded for it. Currently, the FemTech industry is worth just over $30 billion and is predicted to grow to more than $135 billion by 2032.

FOUR WAYS FEMTECH CAN HELP PEOPLE WHO MENSTRUATE

Here are just some of the ways FemTech brand leaders are using cutting-edge FemTech products to change the global perception and experience of menstruation:

1. Menstrual Cycle Tracking Apps

Clue, Flo, Period Tracker, and other FemTech companies have developed various apps that help users identify patterns and irregularities in their menstrual cycles. In addition to providing insights that can help users better understand how to manage period symptoms, this information can be shared with healthcare providers for enhanced treatment.

While useful to individuals, the ability to present this kind of data to healthcare professionals might also push researchers to discover more about the long-term health effects of treatments like hormonal contraceptives that suppress menstruation. For example, while menstrual suppression therapies and medicines can provide relief in some cases, concerns about their possible impact on bone health and long-term health have been noted. Menstrual cycle tracking apps could provide data that could validate these concerns.

2. Smart Menstrual Products

Users who have a better understanding of their periods can have more open, honest, and informative discussions about their experiences. There’s less shame and stigma around menstruating when it’s possible to talk about it from both personal and clinical perspectives.

LOONCUP, Flex Cup, Cora tampons, and other smart menstrual products can track and provide real-time information related, for example, to menstrual flow. These products allow users to monitor their menstruation, prevent leaks, and reduce the risk of toxic shock syndrome or bacterial infections. In the long term, smart menstruation technology will enable individuals who menstruate to speak more confidently about their personal menstruation journeys. Ownership of this biological process can help everyone perceive it as a dignified, basic part of life.

3. Infrared Apparel

Many people who menstruate experience physical discomfort that can make it hard to sleep and relax before and during menstruation. For this reason, some forward-leaning FemTech apparel companies are infusing their sleepwear and loungewear with infrared ingredients that can help increase local circulation and cellular oxygenation.

Consequently, this can enhance comfort and elevate sleep quality, leading to relaxation and stress reduction. These elements are crucial for menstrual health. By offering a soothing and comfortable experience during menstruation, these products can help users more effectively manage some of the challenges associated with their menstrual cycles, empowering them to feel more confident and in control of their bodies.

4. Telemedicine

Though not unique to FemTech, telemedicine allows people who menstruate to speak with healthcare providers remotely and privately, regardless of their location. This gives them a convenient way to have consultations, obtain prescriptions, and ask questions about their menstruation-related concerns. FemTech platforms such as Nurx, Hers, and Lemonaid were created to meet the demand for this service.

FemTech telemedicine can also alleviate healthcare financial burdens for remote patients. Telemedicine appointments tend to be less costly than traditional in-person ones. Many already have trouble paying for menstrual necessities; telemedicine can reduce their need to pay even more out of pocket.

While menstruation technology can’t solve all menstrual problems, FemTech has already made significant improvements. FemTech is at the forefront of providing effective solutions to menstrual challenges, and the efforts to normalize and destigmatize menstruation are paving the way for the democratization of women’s healthcare. With the continued advancements of FemTech initiatives, we can expect a revolution in menstrual health. People who menstruate will continue to benefit from the ever-increasing number of FemTech initiatives, ideas, and communities that come to the forefront.

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This article was originally published on MedCity News.

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