Menstrual cup: everything you need to know to use it properly!
The menstrual cup is a more ecological, economical and healthier alternative to tampons. What are the advantages? What are the drawbacks? How do I use l? In this article, we give you a few tips and guidelines for using the menstrual cup.
What is a menstrual cup?
The menstrual cup was originally created in the USA in the 1930s. Its democratization is very recent, however, and is the result of growing ecological awareness and scandals surrounding the composition of disposable protection products.
The menstrual cup is, as its name suggests, a cup measuring 4 to 6 cm in length, with a top diameter of around 2 to 5 cm. Of course, different sizes are available to suit a wide variety of women and their flow patterns.
The menstrual cup is made from high-quality silicone. The difference with other conventional sanitary products such as tampons or pads is that the cup retains the blood inside the vagina, rather than absorbing it as a tampon does.
It can be used by all women, whatever their age. You just need to be comfortable enough with your body to be able to use it, put it on and take it out.
What are the advantages of a menstrual cup?
If the menstrual cup is so popular with many women today, it's because it offers so many advantages.
Economical and ecological protection
One of the main reasons why women turn to this solution is that this type of product is environmentally friendly - you don't produce any waste - and economical (it's usable for around 1 year, depending on the manufacturer), and its price is around 10 to 30 euros. Several brands like Meluna, Claricup, Luneale...
Up to three times more blood absorption
Another advantage is that it can collect much more blood than tampons: up to 3 times more. Its silicone material provides long-lasting, hypoallergenic protection to limit the risk of allergies, vaginal dryness or mycosis. As with tampons, it's very discreet, invisible under your clothes or if you're doing sports like swimming, or in the bath.
What's more, the cup is available in several sizes depending on age, size or number of children. Choosing the right size is essential to benefit from good protection and avoid any risk of leakage! Available in several sizes, the menstrual cup adapts to everyone.
How to choose your menstrual cup?
To choose the right menstrual cup, there are several things you need to know:
- Whether or not you've given birth: childbirth changes a woman's body and the tone of her perineum. If you've just given birth, external solutions are recommended to allow the body to heal safely.
- Abundance of flow: rather light, normal or abundant
Several parameters can indicate whether the size is right:
- leaks: a properly sized cup does not cause leaks; if it does, it's either too big and therefore not deployed properly in your vagina, or it's incorrectly positioned.
- lDiscomfort: if you feel discomfort when wearing your menstrual cup, it means you've chosen the wrong size.
How do I put on a cup?
Above all, make sure you wash your hands thoroughly before handling the cup, and after linserting it. Important: between each cycle, it must be sterilized.
There are several ways to insert the silicone cup:
- you can fold it into a U-shape by pressing it flat and bringing each side together to form a U-shape
- or fold it into a fishhook shape, pressing down on the top edge of the bowl and bringing it inwards l.
Maintain this fold by linserting it into the vagina. As when inserting a tampon, settle into a comfortable position, spread your labia and insert the cup into your vagina.
When correctly positioned, the cup adheres perfectly to the walls of the vagina, and you won't feel it.
How do I remove a filled cup?
It can be removed after 4 to 6 hours. To remove it, pull by the stem until you can grasp the base of the cup. Then simply pinch the cup, tilt it from side to side and remove it. Once the menstrual cup has been removed, all you have to do is empty the blood into the toilet, then rinse it with hot water to eliminate bacteria. It should be washed once a day with an oil-free, fragrance-free soap. When wearing a menstrual cup, hygiene is very important.
How long can I keep a menstrual cup?
You can keep a menstrual cup in for up to 6 hours. It's best to empty it more often to avoid the risk of developing toxic shock.
What precautions should I take to keep a cup on at night?
They should not be worn at night. Generally speaking, all internal sanitary protection should be avoided at night. The stagnation of blood promotes the proliferation of bacteria, which can lead to the development of toxic shock syndrome. At night, external protection is preferable.
What are the external alternatives to the cup?
If you want to choose this product out of ecological concern or fear of the dangers of the menstrual cup, you should know that there are many alternatives, all equally healthy. The menstrual sponge is another type of eco-responsible internal protection. As for external solutions, you can choose between washable pads and menstrual pants. We recommend you opt for Elia menstrual pants: healthy and eco-friendly, you can keep them on for up to 12 hours (depending on your flow), even at night. Organic cotton is 100% respectful of your intimate zone, and is a breathable, antibacterial material that will prevent the proliferation of bacteria and allow your intimate zone to breathe.
Menstrual cup FAQ
Why use a menstrual cup?
The menstrual cup is a more ecological and economical alternative to tampons, and its use offers a number of advantages. In fact, its composition is hypoallergenic, making it ideal for vulvas easily irritated by the chemical substances contained in tampons and pads. Using it can also help reduce the incidence of mycosis, since when properly used and sterilized before and after each period, it does not disturb the vaginal flora.
How do I insert and remove a menstrual cup?
Applying the menstrual cup is surely the most complicated stage in using this type of protection. Indeed, it can be frightening. But in reality, all you have to do is bend it to insert it. Once properly positioned, it won't move. To remove it, use the pin at the bottom of the menstrual cup, then, when you're able to reach the base of the cup, pinch it and move the cup from side to side to remove it.
When to empty the menstrual cup?
Change your menstrual cup every 4 to 6 hours, depending on your flow. At night, external protection is more suitable.
Is it normal to get a bad smell from your cup?
Consult your doctor, midwife or gynaecologist if you experience any unpleasant odour, itching or abnormal discharge.
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