In some aspect, females are stronger than males. Females can bear more pain than males because they often face it in their life. Whether it’s childbirth pain or the one they face every month, period cramps. We have that time of the month since we are 13 years old (or maybe earlier for some of you). Mostly our mother or sister taught us to take care of our sanitary hygiene when our period comes. There are common things offered for us to choose, such as pads, napkins, and tampons. We are familiar with these products until a menstrual cup sprouted so we can help in saving the environment and lessen the waste. Curious about menstrual cup facts?
Menstrual Cups are small cups inserted into the vagina to collect the menstrual blood. Yes, you read it right! It’s like tampons only it will collect the blood rather than absorb it. Most people switch to a menstrual cup; some because they want to help the environment by using zero waste products and others, use it out of curiosity. Are you one of those who are intrigued about this trendy product that most people are talking about?
Here are a few facts that will satisfy your curiosity- how it works and how important it is that most women switch to a period cup.
Diva Cup or Menstrual cup Facts
- They’re Eco-Friendly
- You can save more MONEY!
- It comes with different sizes
- Using it needs practice
- There are risks too
- Clean it right before and after
- More hours of usage
- No more annoying leaks
- Taking it out (with blood on it) can be unpleasant
- They aren’t scary!
1. They’re Eco-Friendly
Menstrual products such as pads or tampons generate more trash than you can imagine. It takes years before it dissolves and it’s one of the contributors of massive trash. Due to the alarming situation of our environment (trash and plastics, specifically), users started to cut back on the amount of trash they toss out to make a difference. Menstrual cups or period cups are one of those products, it can last up to 3 years and can be used many times with proper cleaning and storage.
2. You can save more MONEY!
Do you know how much you spend on your pads or tampons every month or in a year? It probably did not occur to you how much expense you accumulate just by using these products. Imagine in a span of 3 years, you spend $10 a month on a box of tampons with an average of 9 boxes a year, it will cost you approximately $270 for 3 years- however, with menstrual cup, you only need to spend an average of $15 and you’re good to go for the next 3 years.
3. It comes with different sizes
A menstrual cup is not a one size fit all product. Women have a different size depending on age and if they give birth. Mostly, there are two sizes available in the market: One is small for women under 30 years old and never been pregnant while the other size is a large size suitable for women over 30 years old. Since the vagina was built to stretch, there are women over 30 who prefer small and others prefer large even though they are not over 30. Choosing the size of your period cup will depend on your preference; just make sure you are comfortable with it.
4. Using it needs practice
When buying a menstrual cup, it mostly comes with instruction on how to use it so you don’t have to worry, relaxing while putting it is essential! If you still don’t know how to figure out how to put it, you can read this to learn more about it. Make sure to practice putting it, learn how to use it and rest assured that you’ll get the hang of it after a few tries. Always remember that it was created to make your comfortable if you’re uncomfortable it means it’s not in the right position so redo it again.
5. There are risks too
Don’t be nervous, it’s not what you think it is! Of course, it’s a product that should be inserted in your vagina so a few risks should be put in mind to avoid it. Not cleaning your menstrual cup properly can generate bacteria that may cause infections so you have to follow the right way to clean it before and after using. It’s not like tampons with TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome) associated with it, there are organic and tested menstrual cups that you can purchase in the market.
6. Clean it right before and after
Using a period cup is much better than pads or tampons because leaking is not a problem if you inserted it correctly. Thus, you still have to do some maintenance for it to last longer and to avoid any infections. It’s sold in the market with instructions on how to clean the menstrual cup so you don’t have to worry about how to do it correctly. Make sure to wash it, sterilize it and don’t use scented soap on it. Cleaning it before and after inserting in your vagina helps a lot!
7. More hours of usage
No need to visit the toilet for a couple of times to check if your pads reach its limit because, with a menstrual cup, you can safely use it for 12 hours a day straight; take it out to clean it and use it again. Simple as that!
Remember that if you have a heavy flow on that day, you can check it 3 times within 24 hours but with normal to minimal menstrual flow, you can use it up to 12 hours a day.
8. No more annoying leaks
You can use the menstrual cup for 12 hours straight without leaking! Isn’t that a dream for all women! With proper insertion, your cup will form a suction that will hold the liquid or menstrual blood directly into it so you will not worry with leaks anymore.
9. Taking it out (with blood on it) can be unpleasant
Especially if you are new to it, you can find yourself in an unpleasant situation cleaning it because there’s blood on it from your period. But, it’s not like the blood on your pads or tampons because menstrual cups do not absorb it holds so, instead of dry blood you’ll see actual blood on it. When you get that hang of it, you don’t have to worry anymore, just clean it with running water and you are good to go.
10. They aren’t scary!
Most women are scared of using a period cup or diva cup because they are simply scared of it. But, in reality, they are not scary at all! Give it a try and you’ll see so much improvement on your monthly periods and eventually you help the environment by minimizing the use of trash.
Does it gross you out? Most beginners do, but when you give it a chance, you’ll see it’s not that gross and it’s better than you pads or tampons.
Common questions about Menstrual Cup
There are a few questions we found that most women wanted to know. That’s why we consolidated the most common questions you want to know about a menstrual cup to give you answers that will help on deciding in switching with a menstrual cup.
Can the Menstrual Cup Get Lost?
A menstrual cup is a bell-shaped cup that is made of soft silicone and can be used up to 5 or 10 years! Instead of absorbing blood like pad or tampon, menstrual cup collects the blood.
Diva Cup explains that woman’s vaginal canal is elastic and it’s only 10,2-12,7 cm long, so this means your menstrual cup CAN’T GET LOST!
To answer your imagination that if you put your menstrual cup down there, will it be lost or not? No, it will not! You have to know and learn how to use it and remove it to properly use it. Because of its material, the cup is soft and flexible, you simply just need to insert it into your vagina (you can do it while sitting, crouching, or standing, whatever works for you!)
When inserted, the cup will create a small seal and won’t let any blood pass through, collecting the blood inside the cup. When you need to remove, use your pelvic muscles and pull the stem out of your body. Simple as that! And don’t forget to clean it before using again or before storage.
How Often Should You Empty Your Menstrual Cup?
Another reason to change to a menstrual cup is that you don’t have to make a bathroom break every 4 hours or so. A menstrual cup can be used for up to 12 hours. However, if you are experiencing heavy flow, you can empty your cup earlier.
When you are taking out your cup, empty the blood into the toilet, sink, or shower and rinse it with clean water before you put it back. Remember to wash your hand with soap to reduce the risk of infection. If you are outside your house and not sure if the water is clean or not, use a tissue or wipes to clean the cup after you empty them.
When you are inserting or reinserting menstrual cup, don’t use gel lubricant as its ingredients can damage the cup. Simply use clean water as a natural lubricant.
Can You Use Menstrual Cup if you have a Yeast Infection?
Diva Cup stated that there is no known correlation between increased risk of yeast infections and the use of the menstrual cup. However, if you’re having a yeast infection, it is recommended to discontinue the use of the menstrual cup. Yeast is usually caused by bacteria Candida albicans and can be cured. If you had a yeast infection and or using topical medication while using a menstrual cup, it is best to replace it with the new one.
If you still want to use a menstrual cup, make sure your yeast infection is totally cured. Then again, it’s better to consult your gynecologist before using any internal feminine hygiene products.
A menstrual cup can be used in years, this means you have to take care of it. To reduce the risk of having an infection, make sure your hands are clean before inserting and removing. The menstrual cup also needs to be washed after removal with warm clean water at least twice a day. When traveling, if there’s no clean water, use a tissue or edible water.
Nomoretaboo.org also explain that after your period, you should sterilize your menstrual cup. Whether it’s boiling (for 5-10 minutes) or you can use a sterilizer. It’s not recommended to use soap as it can irritate your skin when the cup is inserted.
How Much Liquid Can a Menstrual Cup Hold?
A menstrual cup conveniently holds one full ounce of menstrual flow (30 ml). On average, woman flows are 30-40 ml per cycle. You might expect there’s more in your cup, but usually, the most woman finds their menstrual blood to be less than what they are predicting. As stated before, your cup can be used up to 12 hours, this means you only need to empty it at least twice a day.
There are many advantages to using a menstrual cup. Did you know that pads, tampons, and napkins can take 25 years to break down in the ocean? Also, you don’t need to worry about buying pads or tampons all the time. Unlike tampons, the menstrual cup is never associated with the famous TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome). If you want to reconsider your health and your financial way, also contribute to reducing solid waste, you might want to consider getting one!