Social media tends to spark debates on everything from the latest fashion trends to health tips. It’s no surprise that a recent Instagram video has become the battleground for a heated discussion among women: Should you keep your tampon in while you shower? This seemingly innocuous question has divided opinions, prompting a flurry of comments.

The Truth Behind Keeping Your Tampon In

Although many people believe that their period stops while they are in the shower, board-certified bariatric physician Kevin Huffman told 21Ninety that the natural process doesn’t change.

“Your period is a natural process,” Huffman told 21Ninety. “Blood just flows. It keeps on flowing, even if you have a shower during your cycle.”

Some women were concerned about hygiene and cleanliness; however, Huffman says there’s nothing to worry about.

“Tampons contain a very effective superabsorbent polymer coating that will absorb all your menstrual blood, including the bits and pieces when you’re having ‘wet’ periods,” he said. “From a health perspective, there’s no reason not to shower or bathe with a tampon in.”

Should You Wear Tampons in the Shower?

However, as with most debates, there are valid points on both sides. Women in the comments section of the video weighed in on their thoughts regarding wearing their tampons in the shower. Instagram user @tinabee1993 emphasized the importance of education and preference.

“Your blood does not stop coming out when you’re in water, shower or not, it’s just not noticeable because it’s being diluted by the water,” she said. “Whatever you all do is perfectly fine! It is a PREFERENCE!”

Echoing similar sentiments, user @zombienad0 shared her personal experience and explained the variability of menstrual flow.

“A tampon is inside your vagina. You are perfectly capable to wash yourself down there with a tampon in,” she explained. “Periods vary between 5ml a day to more than 300ml in cases. Everyone’s body works different.”

On the other hand, @expressionsofgrace advocates for thorough hygiene practices, saying that in order to effectively clean yourself, you should remove the tampon.

“Please CLEAN your vagina properly by removing your tampon,” she advised. “Shower at least once, if not twice, during your cycle. Change your panties and use cotton ones! Be good to yourselves.”

When it comes down to the bottom line, ultimately, the decision to keep your tampon in while you shower boils down to personal preference and comfort.

“There’s no right or wrong,” Huffman said. “Listen to your body and figure out how to give yourself the most comfortable experience.”