Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

More than half of us find it difficult to work because of period pain: but most of us won’t admit it

period pains.jpg

Most women have experienced period pain so bad that it has affected their ability to work, according to a new survey.

Conducted by YouGov on behalf of BBC Radio 5Live, the survey, which polled 1,000 women, revealed that 52% of female workers found it difficult to work as a result of the pain, but that only 27% had admitted the real reason to their employer.

Of the 52%, almost a third had taken at least a day off sick as a result of the pain.

Nine out of 10 women surveyed reported having period pain at some point.

London-based consultant gynaecologist, Dr Gedis Grudzinskas has suggested that employers should offer ‘menstrual leave’ – and that women should be more open about their period pains, telling the BBC News that:

“Menstruation is normal, but some women suffer terribly and they suffer in silence.

“I don't think women should be shy about it, and companies should be accommodating with leave for women who are struggling with painful periods.”


Some countries already offer the leave, including Japan – which has offered the leave since 1947, while South Korea, Taiwan and some provinces in China also have laws in place to allow women to take time off during their period.

Sportswear company Nike also has menstrual leave written into its Code of Conduct policy, which is implemented throughout all international branches of the organisation.

Earlier this year, Bristol-based company Coexist, began offering the leave to employees. Director of the company, Bex Baxter said at the time that:

“There is a misconception that taking time off makes a business unproductive. Actually it is about synchronising work with the natural cycles of the body.”

Stylist.co.uk surveyed readers on the topic, and 57% of 1,775 voted that they think menstrual leave would be a great idea, while 27% said they thought it was a good idea, but weren’t sure how practical it would be in a workplace, and 16% believed it unnecessary. 




“Do not be ashamed.” Women around the world hit back at period-shamers


The new device promising to “turn off” period pains forever

78415_2500 px.jpg

Teens in Nepal document the stigma surrounding periods



This gin is one of the best in the world – and costs under £10

It keeps topping the polls in industry taste tests, but leaves you change from a tenner

by Amy Swales
27 Jul 2017

30-year-old pilot becomes youngest ever woman to captain a Boeing 777

And she's shared her best career advice

by Sarah Biddlecombe
27 Jul 2017

Research says that half the atoms in our body come from another galaxy

You are a celestial being and should be treated as such

by Jasmine Andersson
27 Jul 2017

Veterans react with outrage to Trump’s transgender military ban

“I risked my life for all, including you”

by Amy Swales
27 Jul 2017

Elderly man spoon-feeds his wife ice cream, internet can't handle it

An act of true, unmitigated love

by Anna Brech
27 Jul 2017

These are the UK's best bars for indulging your love of gin

G&T, anyone...?

by Jenny Tregoning
27 Jul 2017

The 10 songs that DJs have banned from wedding playlists

If you were planning on playing this at your wedding, think again

by Megan Murray
27 Jul 2017

‘Not having sex with your husband is abuse,’ insists Malaysian MP

The MP previously said nine-year-old girls were "physically ready" for marriage

by Jasmine Andersson
27 Jul 2017

The one thing you should never include on your LinkedIn profile

Employers are less likely to hire someone who does this...

by Megan Murray
27 Jul 2017

How to spot if your boss has psychopathic tendencies

“The most obvious, immediate behaviour is that they lie”

by Anna Brech
27 Jul 2017