What I’m talking about today is based on my personal experience which I think is necessary to share with you. Most of the bloggers and someone out there will only tell you the benefits of menstrual cup. They won’t tell you the dark side of it as far as I noticed. So, I think it is necessary at this point to talk about my experience so you could rethink your decision about whether to get yourself a menstrual cup or not. Or if it gets stuck how to deal with the issue. I’m not mentioning the brand which I used as all types of menstrual cups share the same mechanism.
Before we move into my experience I’d like to share what I read about menstrual cups and what exactly they are!
What’s a Menstrual Cup?
According to Wikipedia, A menstrual cup is a feminine hygiene product that is inserted into the vagina during menstruation. Its purpose is to prevent menstrual blood from leaking onto clothes. Menstrual cups are usually made of flexible medical grade silicone and are shaped like a bell with a stem. The stem is used for insertion and removal. The bell-shaped cup seals against the vaginal wall just below the cervix. Every 4–12 hours (depending on the amount of flow), the cup is removed, emptied, rinsed, and reinserted. After each period, the cup should be boiled for at least 5 minutes and stored for use the next month.
What are the benefits of using a Menstrual Cup?
When I got my cup, I felt free and tossed away sanitary pads and tampons. Unlike them, it collects blood instead of absorbing it. If you’re a sanitary pad user you know how it creates rashes and sometimes even infections. For tampons, they are harsh on the delicate internal skin of the cervix.
- One time investment
- Eco-friendly and promotes zero waste
- Big time intervals between changing. It stays up to 12 hours inside after which you need to empty.
- Easy to use!
- No leakages
- Can be used for 2 to 3 years
Who should use Menstrual Cups?
They come in two sizes, small and large. If you’re below 25 years of age and haven’t given birth go for the small size. If you’re above 25 and given birth go for the larger one.
How to use a Menstrual Cup?
If you can put on a tampon, you can put this on easily, follow these steps:
- Wash your hands thoroughly.
- Apply water or a water-based lube to the rim of the cup.
- Tightly fold the menstrual cup in half, holding it in one hand with the rim facing up.
- Insert the cup, rim up, into your vagina like you would a tampon without an applicator. It should sit a few inches below your cervix.
- Finally, once the cup is in your vagina, rotate it. It will spring open to create an airtight seal that stops leaks.
Day 1 of using a menstrual cup
The first day I put on a menstrual cup wasn’t much of a hassle. I was already wet due to menstrual bleeding so putting it inside took me 2-3 tries and it got successfully inserted when I heard a pop sound. That pop sound seals within and forms a suction which doesn’t let the menstrual cup move or budge from its place. Initially it hurt around my lower abdomen area after the insertion and I could feel it inside me. So after 12 hours as instructed, I placed two fingers inside me to make a C-shape fold to get rid of the suction and take the cup out. After few attempts, it finally got out and I raved about how I’ll write a blog post on benefits of using a menstrual cup. I put it inside and adjusted in my cervix again and slept like a baby.
The real horror begins now. The next morning was the worst morning ever for me! I tried a billion times to take the menstrual cup out only to find out that my fingers couldn’t reach the rim of my cup. That was the time when I cursed my fingers for not being long enough. To my horror, I couldn’t locate it anymore. While sleeping it went deeper and deeper up to my cervix. I panicked out of fear. And I didn’t go to the college. This sudden trouble made me miss every important thing. I was in my room for 2 hours straight trying to get that monster out. I got the hold of the stem but the strong suction of the cup prevented me to push it out. And when I tried it was painful and I felt like my inner parts would come out.
I was hopeless and believed that it will stay stuck inside forever. So, I looked up gynecologists near me on Google. Also, I rummaged through every website on Google that provided the solution for a stuck menstrual cup. I stumbled across a post about how a friend helped a woman take her cup out. I couldn’t go to the doctor alone and make her understand. What if she doesn’t know about it? And what if she says I’ll have to get a surgery? What if she’s tough on me? What if I get judged. A lot of questions crossed my mind. Going to the doc didn’t sound like a nice way out.
The Final Run
So I gathered courage and asked my best friend to help me. I showed her videos and everything about how to get out a stuck menstrual cup. So we began the mission monster cup. How I laid down and spread myself, I won’t go into this deeper. I was extremely embarrassed about this process and I made her promise me not to tell anyone about it. Now everyone knows about it. *haha*
She calmed me down. I took a few deep breaths and pushed with all my strength until she got hold of the stem of the cup. She made her way in and I was so focused on getting this thing out, I didn’t care about the pain I went through. After infinite tries, she reached up to the rim and finally unsealed it. The main culprit was the suction which made it impossible to get the cup out. When the most important step, which is unlocking the suction was done, it was a cakewalk to get it out. I heard a pop sound when it got out and I cried and gasped to the victory. There was a bloody mess all around. Surprised, I couldn’t believe it was out.
I hold her hand tightly looking at her with awe and thankfulness. She scolded me for trying every other new stuff I came across. If you’re reading this sweetie, know that you were like an angel to me at that time of crisis. I’ve learned the lesson. Sadly, I would have to go back to using sanitary pads.
What went wrong?
So now after analyzing what could have gone wrong, I have a guess. Because I have a deep cervix and the cup might have been a smaller size for me. But it was the only size which fitted me. And figuring out the depth of cervix ain’t no easy job. That’s very tricky!
PS: This post isn’t meant for discouraging you to stop using menstrual cups or don’t start using them. To each his own. It was my experience which I wholeheartedly wanted to share before you. Not many bloggers or vloggers share this dark of menstrual cups. All they say is good goodie things without telling the risks and what could go possibly wrong. Please share your views in the comments and I’d like to discuss more!