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

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Waiting a day vs. asking about brown

17 November, 2015

Question:

Can one skip doing a hefsek tahara on the 5th day after getting one's period, if this check always comes out an iffy colour (brownish)? Does one have to turn to a rav every month if this same 5th day is never clear? Can't one just wait to do the check on the 6th day when it is almost always likely to be completely clear?


Answer:

A woman is not obligated to perform a hefsek taharah on her fifth day.  For example, if a woman knows she is still actively bleeding through sunset of her fifth day, she need not attempt a hefsek taharah on day five.  

However, there is a halachic preference for a woman to become tehorah as soon as she is able.  Also, regularly extending time spent in niddah a day longer than necessary can take a toll on a marriage.  

When a woman has a similar color repeating each month, she can ask her rav if she can assess it for herself in the future, or if her cloths require evaluation each time. Sometimes, a simple step such as soaking in a bath on day five (or, doctor permitting, douching) can help produce clearer bedikah cloths sooner.

Please write back with any follow up questions.


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