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How to track your period safely post-Roe

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3. After deleting the app, ask the app provider to delete your data. Just because you deleted the app from your phone doesn’t mean the company has gotten rid of your record. In fact, California is the only state where they are legally required to delete your data. Still, many companies are willing to remove it upon request. Here’s a helpful guide from The Washington Post that walks you through how to do just that.

Here’s how to safely track your period without an app.

1. Use a spreadsheet. It’s relatively easy to recreate the functionality of a period tracker in a spreadsheet by listing the dates of past periods and calculating the average length of time from the first day to the first day of the second day. You can use one of the many templates already available online, such as Period Tracker by Aufrichtig and Menstrual Cycle Calendar and Period Tracker by Laura Cutler. If you like the scientific side of period apps, templates offer the ability to send yourself reminders about your upcoming period, record symptoms, and track blood flow.

2. Use a digital calendar. If spreadsheets make you giddy and your entire life is already on a digital calendar, try making your period a recurring event, suggests Emory student Alexa Mohsenzadeh, who made a TikTok video to show this process.

Mohsenzadeh said she wouldn’t miss an app. “I can adjust it to my needs and add notes about how I’m feeling to see if it’s related to my period,” she says. “You only need to enter it once.”

3. Run a simulation and use a notebook or paper planner. We are a technical publication, but the truth is that the safest way to prevent others from accessing your menstrual data is to take it offline. You can buy a paper planner or just use a notebook to keep track of your periods and how you feel.

If that sounds like too much work and you’re looking for a simple, no-nonsense template, try the free, printable Menstrual Cycle Diary from the University of British Columbia’s Centre for Menstrual Cycle and Ovulation Research.

4. If your state is unlikely to outlaw abortion, you may still be able to safely use a period tracking app. The key is to choose someone with clear privacy settings and a public commitment not to share user data with authorities. Quintin said Clue was a good choice because it complies with EU privacy laws and has made a public commitment not to share information with authorities.



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