Below are some basic points dealing with the issue of menstruation in general, as well as how it affects us in Ramadhan. The rules are in accordance with the Hanafi school of thought.
1. Bleeding for a minimum of three days and maximum of ten days is considered menstruation (haidh). Bleeding for less than three days and more than ten days does not fall under the same rulings of haidh; such a woman should pray salaah and observe fasts as usual.
2. If bleeding exceeds ten days, a woman must perform wudhu before every salaah, even if she has not broken her wudhu. Within one salaah time she can read Qur’an, offer nafl salaah etc with that wudhu, but once the salaah time is over, she must make a fresh wudhu for the next salaah.
3. During haidh, a woman must not:
* Pray salaah
* Keep a fast
* Touch/Read Qur’an- not even parts she knows by heart
* Enter a masjid
4. During haidh, a woman can:
* Recite duas
* Read durood
* Make dhikr (remembering Allah)
* Touch dua books or any other Arabic text besides Qur’an
5. A woman will not make up (do qadhaa of) the salaah she misses while menstruating, however, after Ramadhan, she must do qadhaa of the fasts she missed.
6. With regards to fasting, as soon as her period starts, her fast will break even if it is only a few minutes before Iftaar. This fast must be made up after Ramadhan.
7. When her haidh begins, she should eat something (discreetly!) as she is no longer fasting.
8. Once her haidh is complete (if she has finished during the day), she should refrain from eating for the rest of the day although this day is not counted as a fast and must also be made up later.
9. If she finishes haidh just before Fajr and has only a short while in which to eat Sehri, she should eat and make an intention of fasting and then take her fardh bath in time to pray Fajr salaah (before sunrise).
During haidh, particularly in the blessed month of Ramadhan, a woman should engage in dhikr, duas, durood, read a translation of the Qur’an and seek to increase her Islamic knowledge. In short, she should not waste the blessed moments of Ramadhan and consider herself on holiday! We are encouraged to sit in our usual place of prayer and make other forms of ‘ibaadat so that we can stick to our routine and don’t become lazy. For further queries on haidh or other issues pertaining to women, see the ‘contact’ page.