Has the menstrual cup already become part of your monthly cycle, or are you from those who have not even heard it exist? If you are in this second group, find out all about how it works. If you are interested in exactly what this product is designed for and how it works, then continue reading. In this text you will have the opportunity to find out what is the menstrual cup and how to use it properly.
What is a menstrual cup?
The menstrual cup is a flexible cup that is carried inside, around the cervix. It is made of medical silicone for multipurpose use and for protection against leakage. Yes, you read well: Unlike hygienic pads and tampons, you can use the same menstrual cup many times! To be more precise, if it’s really good quality, you’ll use it for years.
Here’s what it looks like!
If you have not seen it before, surely you have the question:
How does a menstrual cup work?
In a nutshell like this:
The menstrual cup is placed inside the vagina and collects menstrual blood there. It does not absorb. It can be undisturbed for up to 12 hours and if you put it properly, you will not notice or even feel it there. In the same time there is no chance to get a red fleece on the skirt or pants.
After 12 hours (or sooner if you think it’s necessary) remove it, pour the contents into the toilet, rinse it with lukewarm water, wipe it and then it is ready for use again. Now you’re probably wondering how something so big can not feel this way? And how can it be used again and is it not dangerous?
To respond to the first dilemma.
The menstrual cup is not large at all.
Model 1: The Diva Cup for women under the age of 30 who have never delivered vaginally or by caesarean
Model 2: The Diva Cup for women aged 30 or over or for women who have given birth vaginally or by caesarean
Is it dangerous for health?
If you follow proper instructions for its use, there is no danger and it is safer than other hygienic products used for this purpose. Just keep it properly, empty it regularly and take care of the hygiene of your hands.
How to use a menstrual cup?
Like placing a tampon, placing a menstrual cup initially may be a bit tougher and maybe it will not let you do it right at first. With each cup, you will receive instructions, and here are the steps to follow.
First of all, put the new cup in boiling water to disinfect it. In addition, make sure that you have washed and dried your hands before use. Do not wipe with toilet paper or towels that leave fibers. Do not wash it with strong soap. Use a mild soap that you would use for your intimate care.
Step 1: Fold the cup
This will reduce its width and it will become approximately the size of the tampon. Medical silicone is thin and very flexible and it is best to choose cups that are known to be made of soft silicone.
There are two types of folding
“U fold” – squeeze the cup and curl the ends, roll inward by forming the letter “u”.
“Push down fold” – press one side by folding it down and into the inside, resembling the letter “M”. Then fold the cup halfway.
Step 2: How to insert a menstrual cup?
This is a step that requires a bit of training. Hold the cup with your thumb and index finger firmly and folded. The bottom of the cup is facing your palm, hold the top of the cup with your fingertips. Find a comfortable position in which your vaginal muscles are relaxed (as when you put a tampon) – a squat or one foot raised to a support.
Insert the folded part into the inside of the vagina towards the cervix, so that it is safe to stand in position. Take the bottom of the cup, rotate it 360 degrees to make sure it has fallen in place and opened. If you have a feeling that you are bothered or are not sure that it is opened, repeat the process. In case you are not sure that it is opened, place a pad until you get used to it. If the top of the cup looks too long, you can shorten it. Again, note – take care of hygiene and do not use a dirty kitchen knife for it.
Step 3: Remove the cup
With your vaginal muscles, push the cup as much as you can. Find the top with your fingers and squeeze it a little, to free the air if it’s made a vacuum. Move it to the left and right by holding it to the top and gently pulling it out. Do it carefully to not spill its content.
Step 4: Wash the cup
Pour the collected blood into the toilette and rinse the cup well with lukewarm water. Ready for reuse.
Tip: After the cycle is finished, simmer it again, dry and pack. You’re ready for the next cycle!
We’re sure this video will explain things to you:
How to use a menstrual cup (Video)
Advantages of using a menstrual cup
It’s hard to give up old habits and for many women tampons and pads are irreplaceable option. The look at the menstrual cup and the thought of reinstating it in some women cause disgust and repulsion. Still, believe it or not, the menstrual cup has many advantages over the tampons and pads!
It does not cause irritation, skin inflammation or allergies as it can do pads. They are made of medical silicone, without plastics, dioxin, latex, perfume and other harmful chemicals that certain pads can contain.
There is no risk of toxic shock syndrome associated with the use of tampons. Tampons absorb blood and there is no barrier between what they have absorbed and the inside of your vagina. With a menstrual cup, you’re not in contact with your blood, but only with a cup, so it’s a cleaner method of protecting than tampons.
It not disturbs the microflora of your genitals. Tampons absorb both menstrual blood and other moisture inside the vagina and can disrupt its pH. It’s cheaper than pads or tampons, because you can use it over and over again. It’s a one-time investment that will pay off in less than a year. You can use a quality cup for up to 10 years!
It’s ecological. You do not throw it like pads and tampons and do not create waste.
It can stand for 12 hours, as opposed to tampons, which, depending on the volume of the cycle, must be changed to 4-8 hours. In other words, if you plan your time well, you can go with it to work, on a trip, to a New Year party.
You can swim with it. The holiday does not have to fail you.
Easy to fit in the bag.
Menstrual cup disadvantages
Of course, this way of protecting against leaks has its own disadvantages, but compared to the advantages, they are negligible.
It takes more time to master the placement of this hygienic product. The pads are, frankly, simpler. Sometimes you need to find the right cup for yourself. They come in various shapes, different hardness and sizes. Still, “Diva” cups proved to be the best for many women. They have two sizes, and they are fairly soft so they are easy to adjust.
It’s not practical to change them in a public toilet and do not try if you have not learned how to put it in. However, you have 12 hours available, so plan your time so you do not have to be in that situation. If this is impossible, you can always carry a spare and clean cup. Empty the used menstrual cup, wipe it with toilet paper and return it to the bag or box.
Rubber cups are not suitable for women who are sensitive to latex. Choose those that are made from silicone only.
It is not advisable to use them immediately after delivery or some other gynecological intervention.
Experiences with menstrual cups
Experiences with menstrual cups are different. As we have said, at first you may not find the way to place it without difficulty. However, many women who remained persistent and gave it another chance, are thrilled with its use. Insertion and removing with time becomes a routine. With menstrual cup you can swim, sleep, and some models of cups also allow you to have sex during your period.
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