For many women, menstrual periods are the worst days of the month. The heavy days a notably harder to deal with because of period cramps and muscle pain. Most women prefer to use tampons or maxi pads. While both items are essentially helpful, a new product has started to invade the market- menstrual cups.
Menstrual cups quickly got the attention of many women. Some menstrual cups are made to last for a long time, which you can keep reusing, while others are disposable. But do you have to switch to it just because everybody else is doing so? Learn the facts about menstrual cups below before you make a decision.
Using a Menstrual Cup
Menstrual cups are made of flexible materials like rubber and silicone. That’s why you can bend or fold it multiple times for easy insertion into the vagina. Unlike tampons that absorb the fluid, menstrual cups collect the flow, which you can clean with water after a few hours.
Generally, women need to clean their menstrual cups every 12 hours. But if the period is too heavy, you might need to clean it more often or when a period leak occurs.
Here are the advantages of using menstrual cups.
Cost-efficient and reduced waste
Did you know that tampons and maxi pads are some of the most common wastes around the world? Even worse, these products are made of plastic and cotton, which do not decompose quickly. Tampons, for example, take at least one thousand years to decompose, and that only means one thing, your used tampons ever since you started using them are still somewhere out there.
But this isn’t the case for menstrual cups. You can use these products for a very long time, reducing the need to buy pads and tampons and your waste. Since menstrual cups are reusable, there is no need to buy “period necessities” every month. However, make sure to read the label as some cups are disposable.
No foul odor
The cup blocks the pathway of the flow. That means the fluid doesn’t get exposed to particles and outside air that cause a foul odor. Furthermore, it doesn’t remove the good bacteria and vaginal pH that keeps your vagina clean and healthy.
Comfortable to wear
You no longer have to worry about being uncomfortable while menstrual cups. Although you might find it hard to insert the cup in your vagina at first, it can be life-changing once you get the hang of it. Many women find it hard to exercise to achieve their weight-loss goals when they are on period. But with menstrual cups, you can do any activity you want without worrying about anything.
More free time
Depending on how heavy your period is, you need to change maxi pads and tampons every four to six hours. But you only need to clean menstrual cups every 12 hours, as long as you’re not yet leaking.
Easy to use
If you have been using tampons, then using menstrual cups won’t be a problem. With a bit of practice, you can get the hang of using menstrual cups, too; all you have to do is learn how to fold and insert properly. A vital tip to remember is that you shouldn’t feel any discomfort if it’s inserted correctly.
Here are the drawbacks of menstrual cups that you need to take note of.
Cleaning menstrual cups can be messy at first. Yet this isn’t a problem that will bother you for a long time. With enough practice, you’ll soon figure out the most suitable cleaning method.
Hard to insert
Many women who made a switch to menstrual cups had difficulty learning how to insert the cup properly. But you can always talk to your health care provider to learn techniques. There are also many tutorials on YouTube that can teach you how to use them.
Menstrual cups often come in two sizes- medium and large. But sometimes, they don’t fit when the wearer has uterine prolapse or a dropped uterus. These conditions make it difficult to hold the cups in place accordingly. But as mentioned, talk to your provider when problems like these arise. They can help you learn the process so you can use a menstrual cup with ease.
The only advantage of tampons and maxi pads is that they are disposable. If you are the kind of person who has a hectic schedule, you might find disposable options more viable. Menstrual cups need regular sterilization after every cycle, which is an extra task you might not like.
Overall, the best way to know if a menstrual cup is right for you is by trying to use it. Remember that menstrual cups come in different sizes and formations, so if the first item you use did not work for you, other variations might work well. Do your research and learn how it works so you can compare the difference between tampons, pads, and menstrual cups.