A GUIDE TO THE LAWS OF
FAMILY PURITY

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Chapter Six

Counting the Seven Clean Days

76. What examinations are required during the seven clean days?

After completing a proper Hefsek Taharah, the woman begins counting her seven clean days. On each of these seven clean days, the woman is required to make two internal examinations; one in the morning, and a second one in the late afternoon before sunset.

She should be careful to make these examinations thoroughly, the same way as her examination for the Hefsek Taharah was made. This means she should insert the examination cloth as far into her vagina as possible and into all creases and crevices, making sure that the entire internal area is completely clean. (See Question 63.)

77. Does the woman actually have to "count" each of the seven clean days?

There are authorities who say that the woman should actually count the seven clean days, but most do not require this. However, the woman definitely does have to keep in mind that she is within her seven clean days.

If the woman does not keep in mind that she is within her seven clean days, there are authorities who require that she repeat the seven clean days. An example of this would be a woman who found a stain during her seven clean days which she considered unclean. Several days later when her husband happened to see the stain and showed it to a Rav, it was determined to be clean. However, since the woman considered herself unclean, she would have to repeat her seven clean days.

Another example of this would be a woman who stops counting her seven clean days because her husband leaves on an extended trip during these days. If the husband then returns unexpectedly, the wife may have to repeat the complete counting of the seven days.

In all such cases, a Rav should be consulted as to how the woman should proceed.

78. What is the Halachah if a woman has difficulty making the two daily examinations due to pain, or due to an infection or cut in the vagina?

In such a case, it might be sufficient after the fact (b’dieved) for the woman to examine herself only on the first and seventh day. In the above cases, or in a case where a woman has, for example, a cut or sore in her vagina which causes bleeding, a Rav should be consulted as to how the woman should proceed.

81. What is the Halachah if a woman forgets to make one of the internal examinations on the first or seventh day?

Due to the many different opinions in such a case, a competent Rav should be consulted.

82. Is it permissible for a woman to wear colored undergarments during her seven clean days?

No. A woman must wear clean washed white undergarments during the entire period of the seven clean days. If she is unable to wear freshly laundered undergarments, however, as long as they are white and she examines them to make sure they are free of blood stains, she may wear them. If the woman forgets and puts on colored undergarments, she should consult a Rav concerning how to proceed.

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