I work full time as a medical professional and am often in the hospital until late, after the time to perform my bedikot. Unfortunately it has led to sometimes forgetting/being unable to perform my hefsek, especially in the winter. (A moch is almost impossible as I spend most of my day scrubbed in the operating room.) There have actually been months where I have managed to only do my hefsek and the last bedikah. What are the halachik ramifications of not performing the interim bedikot?
Ideally a woman must perform a hefsek taharah, moch dachuk, and two bedikot per day throughout the shivah neki’im. However, as long as she performed a hefsek taharah, one bedikah on day one and one on day seven, her shivah neki’im are valid and she is permitted to immerse. (In rare cases a moch dachuk is required and may not be omitted – see our article for more details.) If any of these three bedikot were not done, the shivah neki’im are not valid.
We suggest that you make your morning bedikot a priority. When you get up in the morning, perform a bedikah right away. The ideal time for the morning bedikah is after sunrise, but if necessary you can do it as early as alot hashachar (dawn). It may help to set a reminder on your phone. You may also want to leave a pack of bedikah cloths in a visible place in your bathroom, so that when you go to the bathroom when you wake up, you will remember to perform your bedikah.
This is true for the hefsek taharah as well. While ideally the hefsek should be performed in the afternoon, a morning hefsek is still valid. You should make an extra effort to perform at least one bedikah per day.
Try to perform your afternoon bedikot as well, but if it gets too hectic at work don’t stress yourself out if you miss a bedikah. Bring bedikah cloths with you to work (or leave one in your pocket) – when you have a break at any point in the afternoon,try to perform a bedikah.
If you are in a situation where it is truly impossible to perform a moch dachuk (the operating room, etc.), it may be omitted. Otherwise you should try to perform one.
Please feel free to get back to us with any further questions.
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.