Tampons (And How They Make Women Sick Inside)

Posted on November 26, 2006 by Sara Hickman. | 5 Comments

Tampons & Napkins Contain The Toxic Acid Dioxin & Asbestos

Have you heard that tampon makers include asbestos in tampons? Why would they do this?

Because asbestos makes you bleed more . . . if you bleed more, you’re going to need to use more. Why isn’t this against the law since asbestos is so dangerous? Because the powers that be, in all their wisdom, did not consider tampons as being ingested, and therefore wasn’t illegal or considered dangerous.

Tampons have been around since the 1930s, and women have largely taken their safety for granted. But over the past three decades there has been a staggering increase in illnesses that were once thought of as rare, including endometriosis, fibroids (growths in the uterus), pelvic inflammatory disease, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), and cancer,
causing some to take another look at those ubiquitous products.

The worst offenders were Procter and Gamble’s ultra-absorbent Rely tampons. According to the book “Soap Opera: The Inside Story of Procter and Gamble”, the company dismissed consumer complaints about the tampons for years. A 1975 company memo disclosed that Rely tampons contained known cancer-causing agents and that the product altered the natural organisms found in the vagina. Rely tampons were taken off the shelves in 1980, but many women claim they left a legacy of hysterectomies and loss of fertility.

After this crisis, carboxymethylcellulose, polyacrylate rayon (a derivative of wood pulp) and polyester were outlawed for tampons, but viscous rayon can still be used, which concerns some observers. “Viscous rayon can still amplify toxins to some extent, and the lowest risk [for TSS] would be had by using all cotton,” says Dr. Philip Tierno of the New York University Medical Center. Today most tampons are made with rayon, conventional cotton, and undisclosed chemical fragrances.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) insists such tampons are safe but so did they insist that the now banned components were also safe until it was uncovered to be harmful. How much longer will it take for these to also be banned? Or rather, how many more women need to be diagnosed with cervical cancer or other dis-eases before their lives are considered valuable?

This month’s Essence magazine has a small article about this and they mention two manufacturers of a cotton tampon alternative. The companies are Organic Essentials @ 800-765-6491 and Terra Femme @ 800-755-0212.

Here is the scoop:

Tampons contain two things that are potentially harmful: Rayon (for absorbency), and dioxin (a chemical used in bleaching the products). The tampon industry is convinced that we, as women, need bleached white products – in order to view the product as pure and clean. The problem here is that the dioxin produced in this bleaching process can destroy
body cells

Dioxin is an acidic carcinogenic (cancereous-associated) and is TOXIC to all body cells including immune and reproductive cells. It has also been linked to endometriosis and lower sperm counts for men – for both, it breaks down the immune system.

Last September the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reported that there really is no set “acceptable” level of exposure to dioxin given that it is cumulative and slow to disintegrate. The real danger comes from repeated contact … I’d say using about 4-5 tampons a day, five days a month, for 38 menstruating years is “repeated contact”!

Rayon contributes to the danger of tampons and dioxin because it is a highly absorbent substance. Therefore, when fibers from the tampons are left behind in the vagina (as it usually occurs), it creates a breeding ground for the dioxin and other toxic acids. It also stays in alot longer than it would with just cotton tampons. This is also the reason why TSS (toxic shock syndrome) occurs.


Using feminine hygiene products that aren’t bleached and that are all cotton.

Other feminine hygiene products ds/napkins) contain dioxin as well, but they are not nearly as dangerous since they are not in direct contact with the vagina. The pads/napkins need to stop being bleached, but obviously tampons are the most dangerous.

So, what can you do if you can’t give up using tampons ? Use tampons that are made from 100% cotton, and that are UNBLEACHED. Unfortunately,
there are very very few companies that make these safe tampons. They are usually only found in health food stores. Countries all over the world (Sweden, Germany,
British Columbia, etc.) have demanded a switch to this safer tampon, while the U.S. has decided to keep us in the dark about it.

In 1989, activists in England mounted a campaign against chlorine bleaching. Six weeks and 50,000 letters later, the makers of sanitary products switched to oxygen bleaching (one of the green methods available). (MS magazine, May/June 1995)


Tell people. Everyone. ESPECIALLY YOUR DAUGHTERS!!! Inform them. We are being manipulated by this industry and the government, and YOU CAN do something about it!

Please write to the manufacturing companies:

Tampax (Tambrands),

Call the 800 numbers listed on the boxes. Let them know that we demand a safe product – ALL COTTON UNBLEACHED TAMPONS.

Find out more by going to:

ph Miracle Center

16390 Dia Del Sol
Valley Center, California

5 responses to “Tampons (And How They Make Women Sick Inside)”

  1. Mari says:

    Hi everyone, I hope you will find this information helpful and relevant. This is encouraging news if you have both PCOS and insulin resistance. In a pilot study released in February 2007, researchers at Columbia University showed that consumption of cinnamon reduced insulin resistance in fifteen PCOS women.

    Click here to read Dr. Nancy Dunne’s article about cinnamon and a href=”http://www.ovarian-cysts-pcos.com/cinnamon”>PCOS</a>.

  2. Sari says:

    I was going to tell about mooncups and washable pads, but someone already did! smile
    So I’m just sayng hello.
    I got curious about your music; I ended here, when I did some ‘research’ about the song “Mad World”, and found out that you had made a version as well.

    So now you have a new listener, possibly a fan!

  3. andy-dog says:

    Dioxin and related compounds are ubiquitous in our environment. It is better to use unbleached products of all kinds, especially tampons and coffee filters.

  4. Hey there Sara! I hope you are well and prospering and that your new CD is selling like hotcakes. Frankly, I was unaware that hotcakes were a high-selling item, but, hey, who knew? Sara, I hope you don’t mind, but a cut and paste your posting on tampons and sent it out to my email peeps. I did (of course) assign all credit to you and linked your website to my email. Thanks for this and other extremely informative postings. I appreciate them. Please take care and have yourself a wonderful day!

  5. Anon says:

    Or better still (for the environment, and possibly for health reasons – although this is all news to me), women can use non-disposable alternatives like:

    – Menstrual cups (http://thekeeper.com/ – I’ve had one of these for six years, and I absolutely LOVE it. It took a few months to get used to, but I can’t say enough great things about it now. Saves money, better on the environment, NOT messy…I really think this is the perfect product.)

    – Washable pads (http://gladrags.com/ – Personally, the ick factor on this is too high for me, but some women really like them. They are made of cotton.)

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