After several months of anxiety and lots of lingering questions at the back of my mind, I finally used a menstrual cup! And even after deciding to use it, it took me another hour or so to bring myself to actually using it. But the experience was definitely one for the books!
How it works
The cup has a learning and patience curve to it. Unlike pads, I got the hang of using it after the second try.
Menstrual Cups made from 100% medical silicone and can be used by all women. Holds up to 3x the fluid of an average pad or tampon. It can be a bit of practice to insert and remove your cup but once you get the hang of it, becomes cakewalk
The first step is to sterilize it in boiling water for about 20 minutes. Also make sure there’s enough water so that the cup doesn’t get burned.
Then wash your hands sis! I mean, sissss..
Step two: get comfy. I sat on the loo and had to really relax, trust me. Then fold the cup in a C shape and keep it rolled up and guide it top first into the vagina. As it enters, it will open up on it’s own. There really isn’t a certified way you should fold the cup, whichever way you roll it is fine but to know that the cup is in place, slide a clean finger up to the cup bottom and feel it – it should be round.
The insertion method is messy, like really messy but as I said before, you’ll get used to it.. kinda.
The cup can be used for up to 12 hours and also overnight, which I see as a huge plus and you almost can’t feel it unlike pads which are super bulky.
Removing the cup
First step here is to again wash your hands properly. While seated, relax your muscles [and I can not stress this enough, relax your muscles] and grasp the bottom of the cup with the help of the stem at the bottom. Don’t pull the whole cup out using just the stem, but use it to help you get out the cup.
Do this gently, remember this thing has been collecting blood the whole time and we don’t want a Red Sea situation on your hands. So, ease it out, tip the contents into the toilet and you’re done.
Once you’re done cleaning up, you’ll need to rinse it out. If you’re using it again, a quick but thorough rinse will do but after your cycle, you need to first rinse in cold water, then sanitize it again in hot water for 5-10 minutes.
I still had a few reservations about it but here’s a few things I learnt later on about how to effectively use the cup:
Leaking would occur if you unfold too early or if you didn’t place it properly [during insertion] or having the wrong cup size which could mean the size is too small for you or that you need a softer or harder cup.
Leaking is also normally related to how it was placed and has little to do with your flow. Most cups have ample room for an average flow. On your heaviest day you might need to change an extra time or two than normal but the cup accomodates all types of flow so that should be the least of your worries.
All in all, I’ve been using the cup for 3 months now and I wouldn’t think of going back to pads or tampons UNLESS I absolutely had no options left. Why? I’ll let you know in the next post. 😊❤