Tag Archives | tampons

Glow in the Dark Tampons Identify Sewage Pollution in Rivers

Alexis O'Toole (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Alexis O’Toole (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Via ScienceDaily:

Tampons may not be an obvious scientific tool, but engineers from the University of Sheffield have been using them to identify where waste water from baths, washing machines, sinks and showers is polluting our rivers and streams.

The natural, untreated cotton in tampons readily absorbs chemicals commonly used in toilet paper, laundry detergents and shampoos. These chemicals — known as optical brighteners -are used to enhance whites and brighten colours, and show up under ultra-violet (UV) light, a phenomenon often seen in glowing t-shirts under certain lighting in bars and clubs.

Using a mixture of laboratory tests and field trials, the team from the University of Sheffield’s Faculty of Engineering have shown that when tampons are suspended in water contaminated by even very small amounts of detergents or sewage, they will pick up optical brighteners and glow under UV light. The findings were published  March 31 2015 in the Water and Environment Journal.

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Police Warn Of Growing Teen ‘Vodka Tampon’ Use

34051Time to check in on the latest youth trends: teens (both girls and boys) are increasingly using liquor-soaked tampons as a novel and stealthy means of getting drunk. A number of Facebook pages have popped in honor of the practice, called “slimming”. Ah, kids with their crazy fads! The Local enlightens on the scourge every parent should be most worried about:

Police in southern Germany warned this week of a dangerous new form of alcohol abuse among teens – using tampons soaked in vodka to get drunk quickly and hide the smell. The practice poses grave health risks, they said.

In early March a 14-year-old girl collapsed during a street festival in Konstanz, apparently highly intoxicated from using a vodka tampon, the paper reported. Youth researchers have since found out that this form of alcohol abuse is trendy in the region.

The trend arose among teens in the United States, where it is known as “slimming.” But it has reportedly caught on in Scandinavia and other places where alcohol is difficult for young people to acquire.

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