Applying Kohl (eyeliner, surma) or similar things, which enter the
eyes for beauty or medicinal purposes do not nullify the fast. This was the
conclusion preferred by Shaikhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullah) in his
important treatise, ‘Haqeeqat as-Siyam’ and also by his student, Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
(rahimahullah) in his valuable book, ‘Zaadul-Ma'aad.’ Imam al-Bukharee
(rahimahullah) says in his Saheeh, “…Anas, al-Hasan and Ibraheem did not see any
harm in using Kohl for the fasting person.” [Mukhtasar Saheeh al-Bukharee (no.
451) of Shaikh Al-Albanee]
Eye, Ear or Nose Drops, Wearing Perfumes, Oiling one's Hair do not break
the fast because they are neither food nor its substitute.
Taking Injections, which do not provide nourishment and are meant for
medical treatment only, such as penicillin, insulin, or injections for the
purpose of vaccinations, do not affect the fast at all, regardless of whether
they are taken via muscle or vein. The injections with nutritional values such
as glucose or vitamins, etc., are considered as food and therefore, nullify the
Bloodletting for Medical Purposes; If the amount of blood is small and it
does not harm the person, then it does not invalidate his fast, such as the
small amount of blood that is taken for testing. [See, Blood, which invalidates
fasting (pg. 10)]
Kissing and Embracing one's Wife is permissible, if one is able to
control his desires. Aa'isha (radhi allahu anha) reported that Allah's Messenger
(sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) used to kiss her and embrace (his wives) while he
was fasting and he had more power to control his desires than anybody else did.
[See, Saheeh al-Bukharee (4/131) and Saheeh Muslim (no. 1106)]
Unintentional Vomiting, Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam)
said, “Whoever has an attack of vomit, then no atonement is required of him, but
whoever vomits intentionally then let him make al-Qadaa for it.” [Abu Dawood
(2/310), at-Tirmidhee (3/79), Ibn Majah (1/536) and Musnad Ahmad (2/498). Its
isnad is saheeh as Shaikhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah said in Haqeeqat as-Siyaam (p.
Tasting Food does not nullify the fast provided the food does not reach
the throat, in light of the report from Ibn Abbas t, who said, “There is no harm
for a person to taste vinegar or anything else whilst he is fasting as long as
it does not enter his throat.” [(Mu'allaq) Saheeh al-Bukharee (4/154)]
Effect of Medicines and Medical Treatments on Fasting
Question: Are medicinal preparations permitted whilst fasting,
specifically, a) tablets/syrups b) inhalers for asthma c) suppositories and d)
intravenous forms of treatment. A detailed response will be appreciated.
Answer: “Praise be to Allah. What follows is a list of a number of things
used in the medical field, explaining what does and does not break the fast.
This is a summary of Shareeah research presented to the Islamic Fiqh Council
during its regular meetings. Following does not have any effect on the fast,
i) Eye drops, ear drops, ear syringing, nose drops and nasal sprays, so long as
one avoids swallowing any material that may reach the throat.
ii) Tablets or lozenges that are placed beneath the tongue for the treatment of
angina pectoris etc., so long as one avoids swallowing any material that reaches
iii) Vaginal pessaries, douching, use of a speculum, or internal digital
iv) Introduction of a scope or coil (IUD), etc., into the uterus.
v) Introduction of a scope or catheter into the urethra (male of female), or
injection of dyes for diagnostic imaging, or of medication, or cleaning of the
vi) Drilling of teeth (prior to filling), extraction or polishing of teeth,
using a miswaak or toothbrush, so long as one avoids swallowing any material
that reaches the throat.
vii) Rinsing, gargling or applying topical treatment in the mouth, so long as
one avoids swallowing any material that reaches the throat.
viii) Injections, whether subcutaneous, intra-muscular or intra-venous with the
exception of those used for purposes of nutrition.
x) Anesthetics, so long as they do not supply nutrition to the patient.
xi) Medicines absorbed through the skin, such as creams, lotions and patches
used to administer medication through the skin.
xii) Introduction of a catheter into the veins in order to examine or treat the
vessels of the heart or other organs.
xii) Laparoscopy for the purpose of diagnosis or surgical treatment of the
xiii) Biopsies of the liver and other organs, so long as this is not accompanied
by the administration of nutrients.
xiv) Gastroscopy, so long as this is not accompanied by the administration of
xv) Introduction of medicine or instruments into the brain or spinal cord.
xvi) Involuntary vomiting (as opposed to self-induced vomiting).
The Muslim doctor should advise his patients to postpone the above-described
treatments and procedures until after he has broken his fast, if it is safe to
do so and will not cause any harm (even though these procedures do not effect
Majmoo al-Fiqh al-Islami (Islamic Fiqh Council), p. 213.
Wet Dreams during the Fasting Hours of Ramadaan
Question: Do wet dreams nullify one's fast?
Answer: “Whoever has a wet dream whilst he is fasting or is in a state of
ihram for Hajj or Umrah, there is no sin on him and he does not have to offer
Kaffarah. It does not affect his fast, but he has to perform ghusl to cleanse
himself from janabah (impurity) if maniy (semen) was emitted.”
See, Fatawa al-Lajnah ad-Daaimah (vol. 10, p. 274)
Umm Salamah, the Mother of the Believers, narrated, “Umm Sulaym the wife of Abu
Talhah came to the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) and said, 'O
Messenger of Allah, verily Allah is not shy of (telling you) the truth. Is it
necessary for a woman to take ghusl after she has a wet dream?' The Messenger of
Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) replied, 'Yes, if she notices a discharge.'”
[Saheeh al-Bukharee, (al-Ghusl-373), Saheeh Muslim (al-Hayd - 471)]…”
Fasting Person Swallowing Saliva
Question: Does saliva invalidate the fast?
Answer: “Praise be to Allah. A fasting person swallowing his saliva does not
invalidate his fast even if there is a lot of it. However, if it is thick like
mucus, one should not swallow it; rather one should spit it out into a tissue or
whatever if he is in the mosque. And Allah is the Source of strength.”
Al-Lajnah ad-Daaimah li'l-Buhooth wa'l-Ifta, 1-/270.