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

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Difficulty obtaining ‘clean’ hefsek

22 February, 2004


Thank you for a wonderful and informative website.
I seem to run into this situation each month. I have to try 2-3 days after my period ends before completing an acceptable Hefsek Taharah making it at least 7-8 days, instead of the minimum 5 days. Are there any suggestions you can offer to reduce that time?
Thanks again,


In order to obtain a clean hefsek, it is helpful to wash the vaginal area and even bathe (a douche, assuming your doctor does not object, can also serve this purpose). You should try to clean internally with a damp bedikah cloth to remove any leftover discharge, which may hinder you from obtaining a clean hefsek.

You may also attempt more than one hefsek a day. Leave enough time before shekiah to try a few times, allowing about ten minutes between internal checks, to lower the risk of irritation. You may find that you are able to obtain a clean hefsek before shekiah. However, trying more than three or four times can increase the risk of irritation and is not that likely to be successful.

Finally, take the hefsek to a rabbi to evaluate the color.  Many women mistakenly believe that the hefsek must be completely clean. In fact, the bedikah may have some discharge on it – not all colors invalidate the hefsek. However, only someone trained in colors is qualified to evaluate the bedikah.

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