No one likes to talk about or even be seen buying tampons. They are a part of life but tend to err on the side of embarrassing and gross by nature. It would be ideal if they did not even have to exist, but they do, so let\'s forget about the awkwardness of tampon discussions and find some good uses for them other than the obvious. First of all, tampons are made with cotton, which is known to have absorbent properties. Depending on the size of the tampon, it can absorb up to 18 grams of liquid. This makes tampons useful for medical dressings on wounds. If you find yourself injured and bleeding, open a tampon and unfold the cotton, pressing it to the wound and securing it with tape. Depending on how heavily your wound is bleeding, you could possibly get several hours of use out of the tampon before having to replace it. Many types of medical dressings incorporate cotton; you are just getting yours from a different source. If you find yourself needing to start a fire in a pinch, look no further than a tampon. Cotton is flammable (hence the reason you see clothing and pajamas for children treated with toxic flame retardants-because cotton alone would burn). To create a camp fire, pull apart the fibers within the tampon and use them for ignition. You will have your fire going in no time. Most tampons come individually wrapped in water-resistant packaging because in the marketplace, a wet tampon is a useless tampon. This packaging can come in handy for storing items that you want to keep dry, such as matches or medicines. Different manufacturers sell tampons with re-sealable wrappers so you can insert and remove items with ease, while others you may need to tie shut. Being that this packaging is water-resistant (some brands more so than others), you can even use it to make a float for fishing. Simply blow full of air, trap the air inside by tying the wrapper closed, and attach to a fishing line. When your tampon wrapped goes under, a fish could be on the line. It is also possible to use a tampon to filter water. Simply lodge it in a place where water will be forced to flow through it, such as in a bottleneck, making it work like a strainer. The thickness of the cotton will block passage of dirt and debris that could be harmful to you if consumed. Additionally, the clarity of the water on the other end will surprise you. Just because tampons have a particular association, don\'t rule them out for other purposes. Tampons may be made for women, but they are most definitely strong enough for men and reliable in many types of situations. Survival depends on creativity and ingenuity, so don\'t be afraid to think outside of the tampon box.