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Fasting and Ramadan  >  Cases That Break and Do Not Break the Fast

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Cases That Break and Do Not Break the Fast

Question: Why doesn't a medicine that is put on a decayed tooth break the fast but a sublingual pill breaks it? Medicines that are applied on healthy skin do not break the fast, even if they are absorbed. But why do medicines that are put on healthy skin in the mouth break the fast because they are absorbed, too?
ANSWER
The skin under the tongue is not like the skin covering the exterior of the body. It is soft and slippery tissue, which is termed mucosa in medical science. It has entirely distinct properties. The two can never be compared with each other. In the same way, the structure of a tooth is different from the structure of mucosa.

Our physician states the following on this issue:
When a medicine is placed under the tongue, a message is sent to the brain rapidly through the stimulus of the nervous system. The brain, in turn, automatically activates the reflexes under the tongue. Then the salivary secretory system starts functioning and produces saliva, thus dissolving the medicine. After it is dissolved, capillaries, stimulated by reflexes, take action, and it is quickly absorbed into bloodstream. But for saliva, the medicine could not diffuse into bloodstream by means of capillaries alone because it must go to capillaries after being converted into a watery state. Even though the skin of the body is as thin as mucosa, the medicine, for lack of saliva secretion, cannot be absorbed from the skin as it is absorbed under the tongue. Salivary secretion is like a car; a medicine is like a driver; capillaries under mucosa are like roads. In the body, there is a car and roads, but not a driver. If the driver comes, the car moves.

Medically, neither teeth nor gums are mucosa. Teeth and the parts under teeth are like two different organs with different properties.

It is permissible to apply masah on an ankle boot, a boot, or a mast. However, it is not permissible to apply masah on a sock, which is considerably thinner than a mast. Both are worn on a foot but their qualities are different. Likewise, soft tissue under the tongue is quite different from the skin of the body.

To place medicines or pills under the tongue and to cause them to be absorbed by capillaries, as the process has been mentioned above, is like to inject medicines into the skin and to convey them to capillaries. Hence, it breaks the fast.

Question: When my nose is congested, I feel very disturbed. It disrupts my work. Putting liquid medicine into the nose invalidates the fast. If I apply solid medicine, will it invalidate my fast, too?
ANSWER
Applying solid medicine or ointment inside the nose does not invalidate the fast. Liquid medicine invalidates it.

Question: Swallowing the blood in the mouth or nose breaks the fast. Does swallowing the discharge flowing from the head to the nose break the fast, too?
ANSWER
The discharge flowing from the head does not break the fast.

Question: The oily medicine that I dripped into my ear went out through my mouth and nose. Did it break my fast?
ANSWER
Dropping medicine into the ear breaks the fast.

Question:
I am writing from France. My Christian wife gets up at night to prepare pre-dawn meal (sahur) for me. Last night I ate the pre-dawn meal and went to bed at dawn. I was half asleep. Stroking and fondling me, she engaged in foreplay with me without me saying anything. In the end I ejaculated, but I had not done any actions. Was my fast broken?
ANSWER
Your fast was not broken because you did not order her to do such things, and you did not do any actions in the process. But one should try to refrain from such risky things that may lead to invalidating the fast.

Question:
Does vomiting a mouthful involuntarily break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast. Also, deliberately inducing oneself to vomit does not break the fast if the vomit is a little. If it is a mouthful, it breaks the fast. A hadith-i sharif says:
(The fast of a person who vomits a mouthful involuntarily is not broken. The fast of a person who vomits a mouthful voluntarily is broken, and it requires the fast to be made up.) (Nasai)

Question: If one rubs hematite to stop bleeding from shaving, does it render the fast void?
ANSWER
No, it does not.

Question: Is the fast still broken even if an injection is given because of an illness?
ANSWER
Yes, it is broken, and it requires the fast to be made up. Eating or drinking after the breaking of the fast does not necessitate kaffarah (expiation that is done by freeing a slave or fasting for 60 consecutive days or feeding 60 poor people).

Question: If one has a nocturnal emission while sleeping in the daytime, does it break one's fast?
ANSWER
No, it does not. When one wakes up, one must perform a ghusl (ritual bath) as soon as possible. It is declared in a hadith-i sharif, "Having a nocturnal emission does not break the fast" (Bayhaqi).

Performing a ghusl does not break one's fast, either. But one must take extra care that no water goes into the body while performing a ghusl. If water enters the body, the fast is broken.

Question: When we are fasting, is it appropriate to use mouthwash for an oral sore?
ANSWER
If the sore in the mouth is not an obstacle to recitation in the namaz, rinsing the mouth with mouthwash is makruh. If it is an obstacle to recitation, rinsing the mouth with mouthwash is not makruh because there is a valid excuse for it.

Question:
In my workplace there is dust because of my work. There are also those who smoke. Do such things harm my fast?
ANSWER
Smelling something dusty or smoky or sniffing up into the nose the smoke of a cigarette smoked by someone else or the smoke of incense breaks the fast. However, if dust or smoke goes into one's throat through one's mouth or nose inadvertently or if one is given artificial air with an oxygen tube or if one cannot prevent the smoke of others' cigarettes from going into one's mouth and nose, such things do not break the fast. The fasts of those workers who have frequent contact with flour are not broken if flour dust goes into their mouths and noses, though they avoid it. Similarly, the fasts of those who have frequent contact with coal are not broken if the coal dust goes into their mouths or noses, for it is unavoidable.

Question: If a woman is examined by a female gynecologist, is her fast broken? If it is broken, does she have to offer kaffarah (expiation)?
ANSWER
If the gynecologist wets her glove with any kind of medicine or oil, the fast is broken. It only requires the fast to be made up.

Question: The doctor told me that I must be administered an injection for the pain in my shoulders. Do injections and ointment break the fast?
ANSWER
Having an injection breaks the fast, and it requires the fast to be made up. Applying ointment does not break the fast.

Question: Does effusion of blood from gums during the performance of an ablution invalidate the ablution and the fast?
ANSWER
If blood goes out of the mouth, the ablution is broken. If it is swallowed, the ablution is not broken, but the fast is broken. If it is less than the amount of saliva, neither the ablution nor the fast is broken.

Question: Is the fast of a person broken if he ejaculates while watching a pornographic movie?
ANSWER
If a person ejaculates only by looking [at something sexy], his fast is not broken. If he helps with his hand or with something else himself ejaculate, his fast is broken and the fast has to be made up; it is not necessary to offer kaffarah (expiation). But if the same act is repeated on another day of the same Ramadan, this time kaffarah becomes necessary as well. In fact, it is haram to watch pornographic movies. Even though the acts of worship of those who commit harams are valid and they are absolved of the debt of obligatory acts of worship, they, because of the sins they incurred, will be devoid of the great rewards that they would attain otherwise. Especially for a fasting person, it is very ugly to sin so.

Question: If semen is emitted because of gonorrhea, is the fast broken?
ANSWER
It is not broken.

Question:
Because I caught a cold, I sniffed back the discharge that came to my nose and swallowed it. Was my fast broken?
ANSWER
It was not broken.

Question: Phlegm comes into my mouth, and I swallow it. Does it invalidate my fast?
ANSWER
Swallowing phlegm does not invalidate the fast.

Question: I eat much at pre-dawn meal. After dawn, I experience regurgitation of food substances into my mouth, and I swallow them. Is my fast broken?
ANSWER
It is not broken. Even if the vomit that comes into your mouth goes back down into your stomach, it does not break the fast, either.

Question: While we are fasting, if the water that we sniff up into our noses goes out through our mouths, does it invalidate our fasts?
ANSWER
It invalidates the fast. If water is sniffed up into the nose and reaches nasal cavity, the fast is invalidated and necessitates re-fasting of that day, as is the case with sniffing up medicine into the nose.

Question: When our saliva hangs down from our lips, are our fasts broken if we lick and swallow it?
ANSWER
If we spit and then lick the spittle, it breaks the fast and entails re-fasting of that day. If it happens as you have mentioned, it does not break the fast. It is as if some part of it is still in the mouth.

Question: If a man puts a piece of cotton into his urethra to prevent drops of urine from coming out, does it break his fast?
ANSWER
It does not break his fast. Placing cotton into the urethra does not break the fast in the Maliki Madhhab, either. It breaks the fast in the Shafi'i Madhhab, but it does not break the fast of a Hanafi who imitates the Shafi'i Madhhab in namaz (salat, ritual prayer).

Question: Does inhaling the steam that forms in the bathroom invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
It does not invalidate the fast. Sometimes patients are made to inhale exclusively water vapor. If vapor goes as far as their lungs when they are made to inhale water vapor in this way, their fasts are broken.

Question: If a man has sexual intercourse with his wife after night prayer in Ramadan and if they sleep late planning that they will make a ghusl soon and if the sun has risen when they wake up, does it necessitate kaffarah (expiation)? ANSWER
It does not necessitate even re-fasting of that day. That is, their fasts were not broken. Similarly, the fast of a person who has a wet dream is not broken, but the relevant person must take a bath as soon as possible to perform namaz. [One must take a precaution before and must not stay impure until sunrise.]

Question: Do eye drops invalidate the fast? Does a contact lens invalidate the fast if it is worn wet?
ANSWER
Neither of them invalidates the fast.

Question: In Ramadan, we are brushing our teeth after pre-dawn meal (sahur) before we sleep. Though we wash our mouths, we feel its taste in our mouths. Does it break our fasts?
ANSWER
No, it does not break your fasts.

Question: According to the Hanafi Madhhab, when we spit, does blood in our saliva break our ablution if the blood is less than the saliva? Does it break the fast if it is swallowed?
ANSWER
If the blood is less than the saliva, it does not break the ablution when it comes out. If it is swallowed, it does not break the fast.

Question: When a nicotine patch or a diet patch is stuck on the arm, the substance in the patch is absorbed by the skin. Does this absorption invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
Patches or medicines or ointment that is applied to healthy skin does not invalidate the fast. Their absorption does not harm the fast.

Question: Is there a religious obstacle to inserting a cotton bud into the ear while one is fasting?
ANSWER
It breaks the fast in the Shafi'i Madhhab, but it does not break the fast in the Hanafi Madhhab.

Question: Does using hair gel, ointment, or deodorant break the fast?
ANSWER
None of them breaks the fast.

Question: Does chewing gum break the fast?
ANSWER
Yes, it does. Today's chewing gum is not like natural gum-mastic of old. If gum of present day is chewed, its taste and pieces may be swallowed, which in turn breaks the fast.

Question: Is the fast broken if artificial air is given with an oxygen tube?
ANSWER
The air we breathe does not break the fast. Oxygen that is given with a tube is pure air, air with profuse oxygen. If it contains medicine, then it breaks the fast.

Question: Is the fast of a man who kisses his wife broken?
ANSWER
His fast is not broken only by kissing her. If he ejaculates while kissing, his fast is broken. It is makruh to kiss her when there is the danger of ejaculation. If he kisses her to the point of breaking his fast, he will have committed a haram because it is haram to break a fast without a valid excuse.

Question: If soapy water goes into the ear while one is having a bath, is the fast broken?
ANSWER
It is not broken.

Question: Does swimming break the fast?
ANSWER
Swimming does not break the fast. The fast is broken if water goes into the body.

Question: While I was sleeping in the early hours of the day, I felt that I was thirsty. I looked at my watch, and I saw it as 5:10 am. I am sure that I looked at it carefully. I drank water and involuntarily looked at the watch again that it was 6:10 am. I was very upset. The imsak time was at 5:30 am. Was my fast broken?
ANSWER
Yes, it was broken. As you did not do it deliberately, it only requires the fast to be made up.

Question: If an asthma sufferer takes medicine when there is a need, does it invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
Yes, it invalidates the fast. It necessitates only making up for the broken fast.

Question:
Do asthma relief medicines that are sprayed into the mouth, such as Ventolin and Salbutol, invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
When the inhalers you have mentioned are used, they invalidate the fast, for they contain medicinal substances. However, oxygen gas does not invalidate the fast.

Question:
Does inhaling the gas of asthma medication pills invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
It invalidates the fast, as the smoke of a cigarette does.

Question: I applied insecticide to my home. Does inhaling it break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast if it is a little.

Question: For gynecological diseases, pills and suppositories are administered into the uterus with an instrument. Does it necessitate ghusl? Does it break the fast?
ANSWER
By and large, because women are not sexually aroused by it, it does not necessitate ghusl. If medications are administered in the daytime, they break the fast, and it requires the fast to be made up. Even if a piece of cotton is inserted, it breaks the fast if it enters wholly. If a wet finger is inserted, the fast is broken, too.

Question: If the piles of a hemorrhoids sufferer go into the back passage as being wet after cleaning himself/herself following defecation, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
If they go into the back passage as being wet, the fast is broken. If they are wiped dry, the fast is not broken.

Question: Does swallowing another person's saliva break the fast?
ANSWER
Swallowing another person's saliva breaks the fast. If this another person is one's spouse, not only a make-up fast but also kaffarah (expiation) become necessary.

Question: While I am fasting, I am licking my lipstick out of habit. Is my fast broken?
ANSWER
Wearing lipstick does not harm the fast. But if it is swallowed, it requires the fast to be made up.

Question: If one forgets that one is fasting and goes to extremes to clean oneself after defecating and if water goes into the anus, does it harm one's fast?
ANSWER
If it is done forgetfully, there is no harm. Eating or drinking forgetfully does not break the fast, either. If one knows that one is fasting and goes to extremes to clean oneself and water goes inside, the fast is broken and re-fasting of that day becomes necessary.

Question: While I was cleaning the fish tank, water went into my throat unintentionally. Was my fast broken?
ANSWER
If it went into your mouth, your fast was not broken. If it reached your throat and went down, your fast was broken. You must make up for that fast.

Question: I have a wound on my toenail. During the day, yellow water, pus, and sometimes blood are oozing from this wound. They are accumulating between my toenail. If they go back into the wound, do they break my fast?
ANSWER
They do not break the fast.

Question: If rain goes into our throats, does it break our fasts?
ANSWER
It breaks the fast.

Question:
I am a diabetic. If I draw blood and put it on the glucometer, does it break my fast?
ANSWER
Getting blood drawn does not break the fast.

Question: Does a bee sting break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast.

Question:
If one accidentally pricks one's finger with a needle and a piece of it remains inside, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast unless it goes into the stomach.

Question:
If I take trinitrine when I have a pain in my heart while fasting, does it require the fast to be made up?
ANSWER
Yes, it does.

Question: Does sniffing up saline water into the nose invalidate the fast, just as a medicine does?
ANSWER
Yes, it does. It invalidates the fast if it goes into the brain or the throat.

Question: Does a cardiovascular drug that is placed under the tongue and absorbed by tissues break the fast?
ANSWER
Yes, it does. It is like a subcutaneous injection.

Question: If a patient frequently puts water into his/her mouth, does it break his/her fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast as long as it is not swallowed, but it is not appropriate to do so.

Swallowing the wetness in the mouth
Question:
Is there a religious obstacle to swallowing the saliva that comes into the mouth?
ANSWER
There is no religious obstacle to it at all. Besides, swallowing the wetness that has remained in our mouths after we perform an ablution or wash our mouths does not harm our fasts.

Question: Do suppositories that women and men use as medication break the fast and necessitate ghusl?
ANSWER
If they are used in the daytime, they break the fast, but they do not necessitate performing a ghusl (ritual bath).

Question: I had a nosebleed. I swallowed the blood flowing into my nasal passage. Did it break my fast?
ANSWER
If one swallows the blood that flows from one's nose into one's nasal passage or if one swallows the blood oozing from one's teeth, that is, if the blood goes into the stomach, the fast is broken. One must make up for that fast.

Question: Does sniffing up liquid medicine or saline water into the nose render the fast invalid?
ANSWER
It renders the fast invalid if it reaches the brain or the throat.

Question:
Does receiving ear irrigation with antiseptic solution invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
It invalidates the fast. However, having ear irrigation with water that does not contain medicine or cleaning the ear with cotton does not invalidate the fast.

Question: Does putting medicine on a painful tooth or eye or ear invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
Ear drops invalidate the fast, but eye drops do not invalidate the fast. A medicine that is put on a tooth does not invalidate the fast if it is not swallowed; it does not invalidate the fast even if its taste is felt in the throat.

Question:
Does a medicine that is put on a wound invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
Ointment that is applied on a wound does not invalidate the fast if it is not known that it has penetrated into the alimentary canal.

Question: Does epilation break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast.

Question:
Does smelling a fragrance break the fast?
ANSWER
Smelling a flower or fragrance does not break the fast, nor is it makruh.

Question: Does performing a ghusl while one is fasting break the fast?
ANSWER
Performing a ghusl does not break the fast. However, the fast is broken if water goes into the body from the mouth or nose or if one sits into water or if water goes into body when one is cleaning oneself after going to the toilet.

Question: If one swallows the wetness on one's lip, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast.

Question:
If a piece of cotton is put into the anus and some part of it remains outside, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast. It breaks the fast if the cotton is put into it wholly.

Question: If liquid medicine that is put on an injury just before imsak time starts to be absorbed in the daytime, does it invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
It does not invalidate the fast as it was put before imsak (the time when prohibition on eating, drinking, etc. begins) time.

Question:
I suffer from heart trouble. I sometimes take a pill when pain intensifies. If I take a pill when pain recurs while fasting in Ramadan, do I have to offer kaffarah (expiation)? Does medicine that heart sufferers rub on their chests break the fast?
ANSWER
Only a make-up fast is necessary because there is an extreme necessity for it. A medicine that is rubbed on healthy skin does not break the fast, even if it penetrates into it. Sublingual medicines break the fast.

Question: Does having a tooth removal break the fast?
ANSWER
Having a tooth removal does not break the fast. But if one has an injection before removal, the fast is broken. Swallowing the blood oozing from the tooth breaks the fast as well. When performing a Ramadan fast, if one has an injection or if one swallows the blood oozing from one's tooth, one's fast is broken. It is necessary to fast a day for a day later. Kaffarah is not necessary.

Question: Some people say that an intravenous drip breaks the fast only according to Imam-i A'zam. Does it not break the fast according to other madhahib? Nutritional or medicinal substances can be given by means of intravenous drips. Is the fast of a person not broken who receives water, nutrition, and medicine he/she needs by means of an intravenous drip? Since the purpose of fasting is to leave eating and drinking, why is the fast of a person not broken who eats or drinks not orally but intravenously?
ANSWER
According to all four madhahib, medicinal or nutritive substances that are put externally on healthy skin do not break the fast, even if they are absorbed by the skin and penetrate into it. For example, a medicine containing nitro-derm [TTN] is put on the chest for a heart disease. It is absorbed from the skin. It does not invalidate the fast because it diffuses into the body through healthy skin. Similarly, nicotine patches that are applied to healthy skin do not break the fast according to all four madhahib, even though they are absorbed by the body. Things that enter the body through any of natural orifices (manfaz) invalidate the fast.

In the Shafi'i Madhhab, the ear is considered a natural orifice. Everything, liquid or solid, that is put into the ear renders the fast void as if it entered the stomach. In the Shafi'i Madhhab, urethra is considered a natural orifice, too. If a medicine or even a piece of cotton is inserted into it, the fast breaks.

According to the four madhahib and all mujtahid scholars, if a medicine that is put on a wound penetrates into jawf [interior of the body], the fast is broken. In the Shafi'i Madhhab, the dimagh [the brain], the abdomen, the intestines, and the bladder are a jawf each. For instance, if the skull is cracked open, since a medicine that is put on a wound on the skull will go into jawf, that is, the brain, the fast will have been broken.

In the Shafi'i Madhhab, if a knife is pushed into the abdomen, the fast is broken because the point of the knife has entered the stomach, that is, jawf. Just as a knife's entering jawf through healthy skin invalidates the fast, so medicines injected by a syringe or by tearing muscles or vessels invalidate the fast when they reach jawf. In the Hanafi Madhhab, the fast is broken only if the knife enters the stomach completely.

It is known for certain in medical science today that fluids that are injected through intravenous drips reach the brain and every part of the body. Then fluids that are received via intravenous drips invalidate the fast and require the fast only to be made up. Saying "The medicines administered through a syringe or through an intravenous drip do not go into jawf [that is, such places as the brain or bladder]" would be very wrong and contrary to science.

All doctors state that medicinal fluids that are injected into vessels or muscles go to the brain and the bladder. Then we must not be taken in by those who do not know the truth of the matter and must not spoil our fasts.

[In these passages, pieces of information about Hanafi Madhhab have been quoted from the books Tahtawi, Mabsut, Badayi, and the like. Pieces of information about Shafi'is have been quoted from such dependable works as Majmu, Mughni al-muhtaj, Tuhfa, Anwar, Kummasra, Bajuri, Sharh-i Ibn-i Bajuri.]

Question: Is it allowed for sinusitis sufferers to put liquid medicine into their noses while they are fasting?
ANSWER
It breaks their fasts.

Question: Does flow of pus from the ear during fasting invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
It does not invalidate the fast. In a fast, the things that go out of the body do not invalidate the fast generally. For example, getting blood drawn does not render the fast void. However, if one vomits a mouthful voluntarily, the fast is broken.

In a fast, the things that enter the body generally invalidate the fast. For example, blood transfusion by injection breaks the fast.

Question: Does brushing teeth with or without toothpaste in a state of fasting break the fast?
ANSWER
There is no religious obstacle to brushing teeth without toothpaste. If they are brushed with toothpaste, the fast is not broken, but it becomes makruh. If toothpaste is swallowed, the fast is broken and it entails re-fasting of the fast-day that was broken.

Question: There was a cold sore on my lip. I applied ointment on it lest it might break open. Unfortunately, it broke toward the evening. Was my fast rendered invalid?
ANSWER
It was not rendered invalid.

Question: I cut my finger while I was preparing food for iftar meal. A few drops of blood oozed. Was my fast broken?
ANSWER
No, bleeding or getting blood drawn does not break the fast.

Question: Because of inflammation in my elbow, they cut two pieces of flesh that are a centimeter in length each from the top and bottom of my elbow. Inserting a tube into the inflammation to drain it, they put its two ends out. During yesterday's examination, they injected ointment from one end of the tube and sent it out from the other end. I was doubtful about the validity of my fast. Was my fast broken?
ANSWER
Your fast was not broken.

Question: My gums are constantly bleeding because of a improper tooth filling. I sleep after pre-dawn meal. When I wake up in the morning, my mouth is filled with blood. Most of blood has already passed my throat until this time. I sometimes feel the flow of blood when I am awake. If I spit it out, my ablution will be broken. If I swallow it, my fast will be broken. Surely I swallowed blood. Were my fasts rendered void?
ANSWER
Swallowing blood breaks the fast. Your fasts were broken according to the Hanafi Madhhab. Therefore, you must imitate the Hanbali Madhhab. In the Hanbali Madhhab, if things that invalidate the fast arise beyond one's control, they do not break the fast.

Question: When we are having a blood sample taken for testing in the hospital, they are wiping the skin with alcohol before inserting a syringe. After taking the syringe out, they put a cotton swab containing alcohol on the pinhole. Does it have any effect on the fast?
ANSWER
No, it does not have any effect on the fast.

Question: Does a smallpox vaccination that is administered by pricking the skin break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast. It is like applying tincture of iodine on the skin.

Question: Does swallowing bits of food that are left in between teeth invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
No, it does not invalidate the fast.

Question: If madhi (white sticky fluid that is emitted as a result of engaging in foreplay, having a lustful thought and so on) comes out from a man when he kisses his wife, does it break his fast?
ANSWER
It does not break his fast.

Question: If one, forgetting the fast, rubs cologne on a shaving cut, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast, even if it is done purposely. When one forgets that one is fasting, the fast is not broken even if one eats or drinks.

Question:
If I go into a room where people are smoking cigarettes and I stay there for a long time, is my fast broken?
ANSWER
If you stay there needlessly, your fast is broken. If you stay there because of your work, your fast is not broken.

Question: I am keeping the fasts of Shawwal. Today, when I was sniffing up water into my nose for ablution, I think I forgetfully and involuntarily caused water to slip down my throat. Was my fast broken?
ANSWER
The fast is not broken if one eats or drinks forgetfully or if one does not know for certain whether the fast has been broken or not.

Question: Is the fast broken if one vomits a mouthful because of an illness?
ANSWER
It is not broken.

Question: I had a blood sample taken before going on a pilgrimage. My blood was taken into the syringe, but it did not come out of my body. Then it was injected into my vessel again. Was my ablution broken? Did it harm my fast?
ANSWER
Both your ablution and your fast were broken. Blood's coming out of the body broke your ablution, and its being injected into the body again broke your fast. When it was taken into the syringe, it came out of the body. Blood was injected into your body, even though it was your own blood.

Question: Does applying ointment, cream, or cologne to a chapped lip or a slash on a hand invalidate the fast?
ANSWER
No, it does not invalidate the fast.

Question: If an instrument is inserted into the stomach and the end of it remains outside, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
It does not break the fast.

Question: I mistakenly delayed pre-dawn meal (sahur) until ten minutes later than the time written on Türkiye Calendar. Was my fast valid?
ANSWER
You have to make up for that fast.

Question:
Does the tuberculosis test done under the skin break the fast?
ANSWER
Yes, it does.

Question:
If a piece of cotton goes in through a ruptured eardrum, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
No, it does not.

Question: If saliva comes to the throat, does it break the fast to expel it by vomiting?
ANSWER
No, it does not.

Question:
A local writer says:
"The same articles are written in every year. What does it have to do with Islam whether suppositories or the like break the fast or not? Is Islam this?
ANSWER
The writer is not only ignorant of Islam but also ignorant of what invalidates and what does not invalidate the fast. Islam does not change every year. If it is said this year that the fundamentals of Islam are five, they do not become six the following year. They neither decrease nor increase. If it is said this year that administering an intravenous drip to a patient breaks the fast, it is not said the following year that it does not break the fast. In fact, if there are any who write inconsistently, such people should be criticized. Can a person who always writes the same thing be criticized? Now we are asking the local writer: If Islam is not this, what is it then? Should it change every year?

The writer does not know what fasting is and what invalidates it that he can say, "One cannot write about whether the things that enter the body break the fast or not." To begin with, let us explain briefly what fasting is and what invalidates it:

Fasting is to leave eating and drinking and the other things that invalidate the fast from breaking of dawn to sunset. What are the other things that invalidate the fast? Just as things that enter the body through natural orifices invalidate the fast, so it invalidates the fast if medicines that are put on wounds on the body penetrate into the alimentary canal. Injections and drips invalidate the fast because they reach the alimentary canal. (Tahtawi)

Suppositories that are used for diseases are administered through natural orifices. In addition to analgesic, antipyretic suppositories, there are antirheumatic, antifungal, hemorrhoidal, and laxative suppositories. Nutritive or medicinal substances can be given by means of intravenous drips as well. If substances that are not medicines enter the body through natural orifices, the fast is broken, too. What can be more natural than asking and answering them?

Question: An ENT physician says:
"A group of religion reformers said that they would write a new book and would perform new ijtihads that are different from those of Islamic scholars. They requested information from us about that ear drops do not invalidate the fast. According to Hanafi and Shafi'i Madhhabs, do medicines that are dripped into the eye, ear, or nose invalidate the fast or not?"
ANSWER
In the books that deal with Islamic laws, the rulings about it are as follows:
In the Hanafi Madhhab, medicines that are dripped into the eye or that are put on a tooth cavity do not invalidate the fast, even if their taste is felt in the throat. However, medicines that are dripped into the ear or liquid medicines that are put into the nose invalidate the fast.

In the Shafi'i Madhhab, medicines that are dripped into the eye do not invalidate the fast, even if their taste is felt in the throat. But everything that is put into the ear invalidates the fast. Liquid medicine that is put into the nose invalidates the fast, too.

In the Hanafi and Shafi'i Madhhabs, medicines that are rubbed on healthy skin do not invalidate the fast, even if they are absorbed and they penetrate into the body. For example, a medicine containing nitro-derm [TTN] is put on the chest for a heart disease. It is absorbed into the body from the skin. Because it penetrates into the body through healthy skin, it does not invalidate the fast according to both the Hanafi and Shafi'i Madhhabs.

A hadith-i sharif says, "Things that go into [the body] invalidate the fast." According to the Shafi'i Madhhab, the ear is a natural orifice (manfaz). Therefore, everything, solid or liquid, that is put into the ear invalidates the fast as if it entered the stomach. According to the Hanafi Madhhab, solid substances or water that goes into the ear does not invalidate the fast, but oil and medicine invalidate the fast. Oil and medicine invalidate the fast, no matter whether they are absorbed or not and no matter whether they reach the alimentary canal or not.

Since the eye is not considered a natural orifice (manfaz) and since it comes under the same ruling as healthy skin, medicines that are put into the eye do not break the fast in any of the madhahib even if they reach the alimentary canal via various passages, as is the case with medicines that are rubbed on healthy skin, However, the fast breaks in both the Hanafi and Shafi'i Madhhabs if medicine is administered into a wound that opens into the throat, the brain, or the bladder.

What is the aim of the reformist group? They should know the legal maxim that one ijtihad cannot be revoked by another ijtihad, even if they were mujtahids. Reformers do not have the right to say, "The word of Hanafis on this matter is true. Putting sand into the ear does not break the fast. The ijtihad of the Shafi'i Madhhab is wrong."

Question: Could you provide us with information about the rules and regulations in our madhahib about fasting?
ANSWER
According to the Hanafi Madhhab, the latest time for niyyah (intention) for a Ramadan fast is one hour before the early afternoon namaz. According to the other three madhahib, intention can be made until imsak time (the time when prohibition on eating, drinking, etc. begins). According to the three madhahib, it is necessary to make a separate intention for each fast-day in Ramadan. According to the Maliki Madhhab, it is valid to make intention on the first night of Ramadan for the whole month.

In the Shafi'i Madhhab, the ear is considered a natural orifice. Everything, solid or liquid, that is put into the ear breaks the fast as if it entered the stomach. According to the other three madhahib, the fast breaks only when medicine is put into the ear. In the Shafi'i Madhhab, the urethra is a natural orifice as well, so the fast breaks even if a piece of cotton is inserted into it. It does not break the fast in the other three madhahib.

Having an injection invalidates the fast in all four madhahib.

Swallowing bits of food that are left in between teeth does not invalidate the fast in the Hanafi Madhhab, but it invalidates the fast in the other three madhahib.

Having an enema does not break the fast in the Maliki Madhhab, but it breaks the fast in the other three madhahib.

Eating or drinking forgetfully does not invalidate the fast in the other three madhahib. It invalidates the fast in the Maliki Madhhab.

In the Hanafi and Maliki Madhhabs, kaffarah (expiation) becomes necessary upon one who eats or drinks while one is fasting. In the Shafi'i and Hanbali Madhhabs, only a make-up (qada) fast becomes necessary upon the relevant person. If a person has sexual intercourse with his wife, kaffarah becomes necessary upon such a person in all four madhahib.

Getting blood drawn breaks the fast in the Hanbali Madhhab, but it does not break the fast in the other three madhahib. If water goes into one's throat unintentionally while one is performing an ablution without taking it to extremes, the fast is not broken in the Shafi'i and Hanbali Madhhabs. It is broken in the Hanafi and Maliki Madhhabs.

If a husband and a wife have sexual intercourse in Ramadan, kaffarah becomes obligatory upon the husband in the Shafi'i and Hanbali Madhhabs. But according to the Hanafi and Maliki Madhhabs, it makes both of them liable to kaffarah.

In the Maliki Madhhab, it is haram for a man to kiss his wife while he is fasting. It is not haram in the other three madhahib, but it is makruh to kiss her when there is the danger of ejaculating. If madhi (white sticky fluid that is emitted as a result of engaging in foreplay, having a lustful thought and so on) comes out when a man kisses her wife, the fast is not broken in the three madhahib. It is broken in the Hanbali Madhhab.

In the Shafi'i and Hanbali Madhhabs, when a person begins performing a voluntary fast or a voluntary namaz, if he/she breaks it before completing it, it is not wajib to make up for it; however, it is wajib to make up for it in the Hanafi and Maliki Madhhabs.

In the Hanafi and Maliki Madhhabs, it is permissible to fast only on Friday whereas it is makruh in the Shafi'i and Hanbali Madhhabs. Imam-i Abu Yusuf also said that it is makruh. Therefore, Hanafis should not single out Friday for fasting.

In the Hanafi Madhhab, sadaqa al-fitr (a small amount of alms given in Ramadan by those who meet the conditions to do so; it is a wajib duty) is given in holy Ramadan. Though it is permissible to give it before Ramadan or after Eid, it is more reward-deserving to give it before the Eid namaz. It cannot be given before Ramadan in the Shafi'i Madhhab and before Eid in the Madhhabs of Maliki and Hanbali. In the Hanafi Madhhab, it is wajib to give sadaqa al-fitr upon a person who has property or money as much as the amount of nisab. In the other three madhahib, it is fard to give sadaqa al-fitr upon a person who has a day's food. In the Hanafi Madhhab, a husband does not give the sadaqa al-fitr of his wife while it is necessary for a husband to pay it on behalf of his wife in the other three madhahib.

Question: If a male or a female gynecologist or a midwife assist a woman in childbirth in Ramadan when they have an ablution, is their fast, ghusl, or ablution nullified?
ANSWER
The fast, ghusl, and ablution of a female gynecologist and a midwife who follow the Hanafi Madhhab are not nullified by assisting in childbirth in the holy month of Ramadan. But it is not permissible to have a male gynecologist assist in childbirth without a strong necessity.

Question: Does it break the fast if a woman has an ultrasound tube inserted into the vagina for a medical examination?
ANSWER
The tube (transducer) is wetted with something like a gel. The fast breaks if oil or something like a gel is inserted into the uterus. If a gynecologist examines the uterus by wearing a glove, the fast still breaks if the glove is wetted with something. The fast is invalidated if something that will leave a smear inside, though little, is inserted into the uterus.

Secondly, if the woman is sexually aroused during the examination and ejaculates sexual vaginal discharge, her fast is broken. If she is not sexually aroused, her fast is not broken.

Question: It is written in the book Endless Bliss: "If something is inserted and taken out wholly, it breaks both an ablution and a fast." If a man inserts a suppository into his back passage or if a woman inserts a suppository into her front or back passage, does it break the ablution and the fast? Additionally, there are pills that are inserted with an instrument. Are they different?
ANSWER
Something that enters the body wholly in the daytime breaks the fast. So is the case with a suppository. If something is partly inserted, it does not break the fast. When a suppository comes out after entering the body, it breaks an ablution. If it does not come out after entering, then it does not break the ablution. The ruling on the pills that are inserted with an instrument are different because when an instrument is inserted, it is smeared with the wetness existing inside. When this wetness comes out with the instrument, it breaks the ablution.

Question: Does swallowing the blood in the mouth nullify the ablution and the fast?
ANSWER
Inside the mouth, in terms of an ablution, is deemed an inner limb, but it is considered an external limb when one is in a state of fasting. That is the reason why the blood issuing from a tooth or a wound inside the mouth does not break an ablution as long as it stays in the mouth. But after coming out of the mouth, if the blood is more than the spittle, it breaks an ablution. (Halabi)

In some cases the mouth is thought of as an internal part of the body. Hence, if a fasting person swallows his/her saliva, his/her fast will not break. It is like something dirty inside the body passing from stomach to intestines. Bleeding from an injury in the mouth or blood coming from the stomach to the mouth doesn’t break the fast or an ablution. When one spits out or swallows this blood, if the saliva is greater than the blood, that is, if it is yellow in color, they are still not broken. It is the same when other things come to the mouth from the stomach, in which case neither the ablution nor the fast is broken. If a mouthful (comes to the mouth and) goes out of the mouth, both are broken. The inside of the mouth is sometimes considered to be an outer part of the body. The fast is not broken when water is taken into the mouth. (Bahr-ur-raiq, Jawhara)

This means to say that when one spits the blood in one's mouth, one's fast is not broken. If one swallows it, one's ablution is not broken. If one swallows the blood, one's fast is broken. If one spits it out, one's ablution is broken.

Asthma inhalers break the fast
Question:
Do asthma inhalers, ear and nasal drops, sublingual pills, and an ultrasound tube that is inserted into the anus or vagina break the fast?
ANSWER
All of them break the fast and require the fast to be made up.

An asthma inhaler does not contain only oxygen. It contains medication, which in turn breaks the fast. That medicines break the fast is written in all books that deal with Islamic laws.

Also, that dripping oil or medicine into the ear invalidates the fast is written in all books that deal with Islamic laws.

Dripping medicine into the nose invalidates the fast, too. Application of solid ointment does not invalidate the fast.

A sublingual pill is a medicine. Because it is absorbed from the soft tissue called mucosa, it comes under the same ruling as a subcutaneous injection. It breaks the fast.

The instrument (transducer) of ultrasound is lubricated with a slippery substance like ointment, that is, a gel. The fast is broken when this gel goes into the body. When a gynecologist examines the uterus by wearing a glove, if he or she lubricates the glove with medicine or a gel, such an examination breaks the fast, too.

Technology has improved, and excellent devices have been made. Forms of treatment have been developed. However, the human body has not changed. Nothing has been added to or removed from it. Fasting is an act of worship. Virtues of this act of worship and requirements for the validity of it are written in our religious books. They are valid until the end of the world.

It is ignorance to say that these were not known in the past or to find other pretexts. Weren't there things that went into the body or went out of the body in those days? That is, didn't anything use to go into the body or go out of the body in those times? To change the acts of worship according to time means to change the religion.

Natural orifices and the fast
Question:
A medicine that is put into the eye does not break the fast, though it reaches the throat. But why do medicines that are put into ear or nose break the fast?
ANSWER
There is a rule in Islamic jurisprudence:
"Things that go into the body through natural bodily orifices break the fast."
For this reason, the fast breaks if medicines or oil is put into the ear, which is a natural orifice. The nose, too, is a natural orifice. If liquid medicine is sprayed into the nose, it breaks the fast. Also, things that go into the body through the back passage, which is a natural orifice, nullify the fast, too. On the other hand, the eye is not a natural orifice; therefore, eye drops do not break the fast.

Some people, as they do not know the above-mentioned rule well, think that having an injection does not break the fast. They say that injections are not administered through natural orifices. Medicines that are absorbed from healthy skin do not break the fast, but medicines that go into the body through injured skin and reach the alimentary canal break the fast. Injections and intravenous drips, as they reach the alimentary canal, break the fast according to all four madhahib.

Question: If one faints in Ramadan, does it break one's fast to drip water into one's mouth to bring one round?
ANSWER
Yes, the fast breaks when water reaches the throat. It is necessary to make up for that fast. Kaffarah is not necessary.

Question: If ointment or cologne or tincture of iodine or hydrogen peroxide is applied on an open wound, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
Cologne or tincture of iodine or hydrogen peroxide does not harm the fast in any way.

If it is known that the medicine put on an open wound penetrates into one's brain or alimentary canal, one's fast breaks. If it is not known well that it has penetrated in, the fast does not break according to Imam-i Muhammad and Imam-i Abu Yusuf. If the medicine is liquid, one's fast breaks according to Imam-i A'zam. All three imams agree that the fast does not break if the medicine which is not known for certain to have penetrated in is solid. (Annotation to Maraq-il-falah)

Question:
It is said that during a fast it is permissible to put medicine on a painful tooth but it is makruh to brush teeth with toothpaste. What is the reason for this?
ANSWER
Putting medicine on a painful part is a necessity. If it hurts very much, putting medicine on it becomes an extreme necessity. Because inside the mouth is considered an external limb when one is in a state of fasting, a medicine that is taken into the mouth or that is put on a tooth does not break the fast. Nor does it become makruh as it has been put on it out of necessity. However, it is possible to brush teeth only with a toothbrush. It is not an extreme necessity to brush it with toothpaste. Also, there is the danger of breaking of the fast if toothpaste is swallowed, and it is makruh to do an act that puts the fast in danger of being invalidated. Similarly, it is makruh to kiss one's wife when there is the danger of ejaculating. There is always a possibility that one may ejaculate during foreplay, so one must keep out of danger. The purport of a hadith-i sharif is as follows:
(He who walks around an abyss may fall down into the abyss at any moment.) [Bukhari]

Therefore, one must strive to refrain from things that are makruh for a fasting person.

Question: Does getting blood drawn or having an injection break the fast and ablution?
ANSWER
The general rule is this:
Things that go into the body break the fast while things that go out of the body break the ablution.

There are exceptions to this rule:
Getting blood drawn breaks the ablution but does not break the fast. When medicine is inserted into the body by a syringe, it does not break the ablution but breaks the fast.

Exceptions in terms of ablution are as follows:
Such things as sweat, mucus, and phlegm do not break the ablution, though they go out of the body.

Exceptions in terms of the fast are as follows:
Though things that go out of the body do not break the fast, vomiting a mouthful voluntarily breaks the fast. Though things that enter the body break the fast, swallowing phlegm does not break the fast.

Inhaling oxygen gas, smelling fragrance, and swallowing the discharge that comes to the nose do not invalidate the fast. Heart disease medications that are put on the chest do not break the fast, though they enter the body from healthy skin. So is the case with nicotine patches that are stuck on an arm. Medicines that are put into the eye do not break the fast, but they break the fast if they are put into the ear.

Water's slipping down the throat
Question:
If one inadvertently causes water to go into one's throat while performing an ablution, does it break the fast?
ANSWER
The fast is broken according to the Hanafi and Maliki Madhhabs. According to the Shafi'i Madhhab, the fast is broken only if one puts water into one's mouth to extremes or if one puts water into one's mouth more than three times and thus causes water to go into one's throat. If water slips down one's throat while one is making an ablution in a normal way, the fast is not broken. According to the Hanbali Madhhab, if water slips down the throat unintentionally, it does not break the fast. (Mizan-ul-kubra, Al-Fiqh 'Ala Al-Madhahib al-Arba'ah)
 
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Date of Update
23 Nisan 2017 Pazar
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