Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

  • Hebrew
  • English
  • Espnaol
  • Francais
Menu

Nervous about Shabbat mikveh

1 September, 2009

Question:

I would be grateful for some advice on how to be less nervous about a leil Shabbos tevilah.
I haven't been on leil Shabbos for nearly 19 years and I'm getting a bit paranoid that I might find a bit of loose skin or some other problem after lecht bensching even though I always check thoroughly after I prepare.
I know this isn't a shayla as such but I would be glad of some words to help me feel at my ease.
Many thanks.


Answer:

You can do a pretty thorough checking over of your body shortly before candle lighting so that you can remove any chatzitzot before Shabbat.  Once you get to the mikvah you have to inspect your body again, but you can be confident that you did your best to remove all the chatzitzot before Shabbat. 

It is important to remember that although we try to remove all barriers prior to immersion, many of these barriers would not actually invalidate the tevilah after the fact. That means that although we may try to remove small pieces of flaking skin, they would not invalidate the tevilah if you did immerse with them, especially if they were sufficiently softened from bathing.  Tiny flakes of a skin are not even considered a chatzitzah, and you do not need to worry about them all. If you have specific areas that concern you (your nails, lips, etc.) you should give them particular attention before Shabbat, even smoothing them down with a light cream if necessary (leaving enough time that it will be totally absorbed by the time you go to immerse.)

B'Hatzlacha!


This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.

For further questions or comments: 

The Nishmat Women's Health and Halacha Site is a public service of Nishmat, The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women. This project and others like it are made possible by contributions from people like you. If you have benefited from the service, and wish to enable us to help others, click here to donate.


Users of Internet filtering services: This site discusses sensitive subjects that some services filter without visual indication. A page that appears 100% complete might actually be missing critical Jewish-law or medical information. To ensure that you view the pages accurately, ask the filtering service to whitelist all pages under yoatzot.org.