What's the difference between pads and tampons?

OK, here's a good question. When a girl is younger, she might not know what a period is. And if she doesn't know that, then she wouldn't know what supplies go along with periods. That's what Anonymous is asking today.

Dear PLS,
What is the difference between pads and tampons?
Anonymous, 11
Pads and tampons are the most common supplies for handling periods. Pads seem to be the simpler option for many, because a pad is a piece of material made to absorb the blood. And they're simple to use. Just peel off the strip and the adhesive will stick to the inside your underwear.

A tampon is also made of absorbent material, but it's inserted inside the vagina. The vagina is a tube-like space, so the tampon fits in that space and prevents blood from getting out.  They have to be changed regularly. To remove them, you pull on a small string.

For some girls, it's all so new - learning about periods, learning about the internal workings of their bodies - that they are worried about using tampons. But tampons are good for people who play sports and swim. Because the tampon is inside the body, it won't get wet and soggy like a pad would.

Learn more about both kinds of protection here: Pads and Tampons

Think pink!



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Anonymous soulkeeper said...

I've been using pads for a long time but I'm scared of tampons. Can I just stick with pads?

August 2, 2014 at 7:47 PM  
Anonymous Remakingabraverme said...

(Sorry if I've already posted this, I'm not sure what's going on with my iPad)
I don't like tampons either, and in my opinion, there is no good reason why a girl should have to wear a tampon if she isn't comfortable with it. If you don't have a problem with pads, stick with them.

DFTBA- don't forget to be awesome!

August 3, 2014 at 11:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think ill just stick with pads.

August 4, 2014 at 7:40 PM  
Anonymous pink-a-boo said...

There are also other types of sanitary products such as menstrual cups, cloth pads, softcups and menstrual sponges. Some people prefer these, so they're worth looking into.

August 5, 2014 at 12:38 AM  
Anonymous giselle said...

thanks pink-a-boo

August 7, 2014 at 3:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear PLS
Are tampons painful?

August 9, 2014 at 8:33 AM  
Anonymous cutiepie4eversophie said...

Whats a menstrual cup?
But yeah , i use pads n dont think i would b comfortable using a tampon

August 9, 2014 at 3:09 PM  
Anonymous pink-a-boo said...

You're welcome giselle! :)

August 10, 2014 at 5:26 AM  
Anonymous Remakingabraverme said...

Yeah, thanks pink-a-boo! I'd never heard of some of those, but I'll look into them!


August 10, 2014 at 10:24 PM  
Anonymous pink-a-boo said...

a menstrual cup is basically a silicon cup that goes inside the vagina, and collects the blood instead of absorbing it. I like it because it's reusable so there's no garbage
However, if you're not comfortable with tampons, you probably won't be comfortable with a menstrual cup because like a tampon, it goes inside the vagina, and unlike a tampon, it doesn't have a string so you actually have to reach up inside yourself to get it out.

August 13, 2014 at 2:51 AM  
Anonymous cutiepie4eversophie said...

Its reusable wow thats really convinient. But thank youu for the info :)

August 14, 2014 at 2:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It depends if you put them in correctly or not. If the tampon isn't totally inside you it DOES cause discomfort. However, if you put it in correctly, you shouldn't feel anything. When I wear tampons it doesn't feel like there is anything there, which is nice. It doesn't hurt to put them in or take them out, it is just a little uncomfortable. You'll get used to it! :)

August 17, 2014 at 11:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey soulkeeper :) u can do whatever u want if u want to stick to pads that's totally up to u :)

August 27, 2014 at 4:22 AM  
Anonymous LoveStruck said...

hey I think im scared of the tampons... AGh I wanna get one but im too scared! HELP!

December 18, 2014 at 9:31 PM  
Anonymous Leah09 said...

Tampon= you can insert it
Pads=you just put it on the inside of your underwear.
I only wear pads so I don't know much about tampons but I have heard for tampons you have to insert it properly, there will be instructions and you can not leave it longer than the said amount of time or it will go inside.
AAAH!, now for pad put the wings on the side of the underwear and yeah, pads you may need to change if it fills up and both prevent periods blood from leaking!
Hope this helps Anonymous, 11 whom asked


I am new here by the way!

December 22, 2014 at 11:33 AM  
Anonymous Leah09 said...

pads and tampons both absorb the blood, that is how they prevent it,
for extra information!

December 22, 2014 at 11:36 AM  
Anonymous Leah09 said...

Thanks Pink-a-boo,

December 22, 2014 at 11:38 AM  
Anonymous Leah09 said...

Thanks for the suggestions, Pink-a-boo:)

December 22, 2014 at 11:39 AM  
Anonymous Leah09 said...

@ soulkeeper,
They are both good, infact pads are kind of better!:) so like Remakingabraverme and anonymous said, yeah just stick with what you prefer:)

December 22, 2014 at 11:44 AM  
Anonymous Isabella09 said...

Its embarassing but I think I can talk about it here.
Okay so my periods keep on leaking and it is noticable and I think they overflow and I think it happens at school so do you have any advice??

December 24, 2014 at 1:35 PM  
Anonymous Arabella54 said...

I see a red spot in my underwear but I feel like I am too young, I am only 13 and I heard that periods are red. Its like bleeding color. It just happened and its bright red and I feel something flowing. I am scared, do I have my periods? but I know I am too young. You only get your periods when you are like 15 and 16

December 26, 2014 at 8:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i really don't know much on the subject of tampons. but i wear pads because a few month ago i started. But if you dont want to wear pads i suggest when your cycle ends swim. Oh and if your are active alot on your cycle and war pads i suggest stayfree ultra thins . if you war tampons i think tampax peral or playtex sport from princesspiggie101

December 28, 2014 at 3:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've never heard of a menstural sponge. Hm sounds strange yet interesting.

January 3, 2015 at 1:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

pads are great for when you first get your period but after you've had it for a while you might want to try tampons since pads can be a hassle for sports.

January 8, 2015 at 2:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please post another blog! They really help and I love reading them! Also can you post more?? I find you go months without posting anything. Please post soon:)

January 8, 2015 at 10:24 PM  
Anonymous Baseball Chic said...

Hey, I've only had to wear tampons once because we were going to a water park and my period came up unexpected the day before. I still had fun but the tampon was the most uncomfortable thing in the world. If I were you I would stick with pads. =)

January 16, 2015 at 10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That would feel funny, I'm gonna use pads -Shannon h

January 17, 2015 at 2:22 AM  
Anonymous alienxgirl72459831 said...

My mom won't let me even touch a tampon in my head i'm yelling at her saying "Whats the big deal?"

April 11, 2015 at 7:50 PM  
Anonymous Anna04 said...

Thx Leah09 I tink I'm just gonna stick with what I prefer which is pads. PS. By the way I'm new here !!

May 4, 2015 at 3:48 AM  
Anonymous Anna04 said...

Arabella54, don't worry us girls can get periods from the age of NINE that might be young but some peoples periods come quicker than others so don't worry u are normal !!!

May 4, 2015 at 3:52 AM  
Anonymous Anna04 said...

Hi I'm really scared about having my periods and I am worried its gonna come UNEXPECTEDLY. I don't know what to do. Anyone got advice ???

May 4, 2015 at 3:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pads are definitely more comfortable than tampons. Tampons are pretty uncomfortable and I wouldn't take it as a good idea to wear tampons, especially at school.

May 13, 2015 at 10:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tampons?Who even uses tampons?They must be so uncmfortable!I use pads

May 14, 2015 at 9:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks now I know what to buy when I get my period( and by the looks if it, that will be VERY soon!;)

May 24, 2015 at 6:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pads you just stick to you underwear tampons are In your vagina

. from
. Athens k

May 28, 2015 at 4:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think pads would be WAY more comfortable then tampons, the very thought of them creeps me out :/

June 14, 2015 at 9:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes please SO helpful

July 10, 2015 at 2:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK so any girl going through puberty and you are starting to develop boobs and you need a bra but don't want want to ask a parent because its super awkward.Well thing is I'm 11 right now and I talked to my mom about the whole boob thing and period thing she got me everything I need. So if you think your mom will say no to getting you brasvand tampons and pads.She won't because she went through the same thing so just ask. Trust me its worth it.

July 19, 2015 at 8:32 PM  
Anonymous jenna17 said...

I have always used pads since I got my perioed 3 years ago at the age of 10, but now since im 13, and have a membership at our townd countryclub I started to use tampons for the pool. Tampons do not hurt one bit, it might be a bit uncomfortable at first but you get used to the feeling after a while.

August 11, 2015 at 6:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pads are comfortable but tampons absorb thd blood so u can go swimming

August 12, 2015 at 2:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't use them yet I didn't get my period

September 7, 2015 at 2:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The difference between a tampon and pad is that a tampon you insert into your vagina,to soak up blood while its coming out. On the other hand a pad is what you place in your knickers to soak up the blood as it comes in. However if you have a heavy flow you may need to have thicker pads!

December 5, 2015 at 11:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i have had my period for 13 weeks now and i am NOT considering using tampons, the idea of them makes me shudder!

December 11, 2015 at 12:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi. I say u should wear pads first and then tapons. I mean, that's what I did.

January 8, 2016 at 4:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ummm...........well i dodnt know because im only 10 and ido notthink my period will comeany timesoon

February 2, 2016 at 7:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

use the thinest padsyuo canthat helosmakethem more commfey

February 2, 2016 at 7:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi I've got a tip. If u have your regular period. Before school put 2 pads on top of each other in your underwear so that when you change it you don't need to take a pad with you.

February 17, 2016 at 4:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good question. Pads just stick into your underwear- while tampons go inside.

February 21, 2016 at 9:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

tampons are comfy wether you like to be active or not

February 24, 2016 at 9:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just do what ever you feel comfortable doing 😊

March 20, 2016 at 7:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your about the same age as me and my mom and I agree pads a more comfy when she had a baby that's what she wore and she has spare ones for me once I have my period but I also have a book about this stuff from American girl and that's helpful

March 31, 2016 at 12:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When you start your period, you might start with a pad. Most girls like pads better, but everyone is different. My first period my mom didn't want me to use tampon. Me and most of me my friends used pads and were kinda afraid of tampons. Pads are good for everyday things like staying home,shopping it going to a friends house. Tampons are for swimming,sports, and other things that may not make you feel comfortable moving around a lot with a pad. The choice us totally u to you. But it sometimes depends on your mother's decision, the activity, and how long the activity us.Hope this helps!

July 15, 2016 at 4:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

cool facts to know thanks

September 6, 2016 at 11:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

how often do you have to change a tampon?

September 8, 2016 at 4:15 PM  
Anonymous happy panda said...

tampons are better for sports and pads are better for longer waiting to change time

September 8, 2016 at 4:16 PM  
Anonymous zombii said...

I prefer pads...

December 27, 2016 at 2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for saying that but I'm scared to ask my mom about bras because my dads all ways around and then she might tell my older sister

December 30, 2016 at 12:01 AM  
Anonymous Hannah🐯 said...

If you want to know about breast development, ask me. I went to many different websites and read many different books about them, so I'm your girl. It can be scary, but it just means that puberty is beginning. My breasts are developing, so I know what it is like. If someone stares at your breasts, fold your arms and stare them straight in the eye. They will probably get the hint and stop. You can get training bras at clothing stores, but if you are in need of an actual bra, you can get that, too. I wear actual bras, and they are comfortable. There is no need to wear your bra at night. If you have questions, just comment!

March 6, 2017 at 10:13 AM  
Anonymous Emily said...

I really have no preference,I use them both and all I can say is that it all depends on how I am feeling and what I am doing because sometimes I feel like the thought of having a tampon in my body is gross because I already feel gross.But sometimes when I am doing something like when I am cheering,dancing,working out,running,or going on a date or wedding,I will wear a tampon.or sometimes I Will switch between the 2 or sometimes I am just chilling at home and want to wear a pad

June 30, 2017 at 12:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As for me I have not gotten my period yet but i do and don't want it at the same time. I also see how many times my best friend has to go to the bathroom to change her pad. It is almost six times a day. It seems like too much work. It seems good because if she tells my female class teacher that she needs to use the bathroom, our teacher knows her exact reason. Help guys! Too embarrassed to ask mom.

July 11, 2017 at 12:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I always wear a pad because tampons are uncomfortable for me. I hate it when I get my period in school. It sucks!!!!

July 28, 2017 at 6:52 AM  

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