The menstrual cup is the need of the hour. The women from the attainment of menarche (first period) to menopause (last period) approximately use 17,000 (seventeen thousand) pads which will be disposed of in her lifetime. Did you know about that?
We all concerned about climate change but nobody thinks about what happens to those pads. Is there any role of sanitary pads in climate change? Is the menstrual cup a good alternative? So, to find the answers to such questions let’s go through this article.
What Is A Menstrual cup?
A menstrual cup is a sanitary care product that is used to take care of hygiene during the periods or menstrual cycle. It is a dome-shaped cup which you can wear in the vagina.
The menstrual cup is made up of medical-grade silicone or latex. It will not absorb any menstrual blood, it collects the blood which needs to be emptied and can be reused.
You can wear it for up to 12 hours. But it depends from person to person and women’s first day to the fourth day as the blood flow differs. At the beginning of you are feeling remove the menstrual cup in 6 hours, dispose of the menstrual blood by flushing it. After that wash it in running water and reinsert it. After some time you will get an idea of how much time you require to dispose of the menstrual blood.
Advantages Of The Menstrual Cup
• Menstrual Cups are pocket friendly:
If you calculate the money you spend on sanitary pads in ten years, you will know it is better to invest your money in menstrual cups. It lasts for ten years.
• Menstrual Cups are environmentally friendly:
It is a way better option than sanitary pads and tampons because cups are reusable and recyclable.
• Menstrual cups are safer than tampons:
Tampons absorb the blood whereas cups collect the blood. There is a difference when blood and other fluids are absorbed in a tampon it might not be good for your vaginal hygiene.
• It can be worn with IUD (intrauterine device):
It is suggested to wait for two menstrual cycles before using a cup after IUD (intrauterine device) is fitted.
• Chemicals are not used in menstrual cups:
Unlike pads and tampons, menstrual cups do not contain chemicals. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), some of the chemicals are known to cause cancer in human beings.
Environmental Impact Of Sanitary Pads
We are going through all the benefits of a menstrual cup. Let’s take a look at why you should not use sanitary pads. And if you care about the environment and you still use sanitary pads will shock you.
Sanitary pads take about 500-800 years to decompose. This means we are generating waste for 500-800 years for just one single you. Whereas a menstrual cup can be used for up to 10 years. And it only compromises 0.4% of plastic waste. As it is reusable, it also reducing waste generation. And you can live a zero-waste lifestyle.
How To Use A Menstrual Cup?
A Menstrual Cup is not easy to use if you are a beginner.
How To Insert A Menstrual Cup?
- Wash your hands properly.
- Wash it because lubrication is needed for the insertion of the menstrual cup.
- Fold the cup to form a C shape.
- Relax and sit down. Spread your legs and insert it in your vagina.
- To ensure it is opened try to rotate the stem it will be opened.
How To Remove The Menstrual Cup?
- Wash your hands properly.
- You can feel the stem so just above it pinch a little to create a vacuum.
- By pinching it will start coming out.
- Flush the menstrual blood.
How To Sanitize The Menstrual Cup At The End Of The Cycle?
- Wash your hands properly.
- Rinse it thoroughly.
- Place it in the boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes but not more than that. You can use a timer to not boil it for more time than required.
- Dry it with a towel. Before storing the cup it should be completely dry.
- Store it in a breathable and dry place. Avoid using plastic bags. Many menstrual cups come with a pouch or you can purchase it online.
Things To Keep In Mind Before Using A Menstrual Cup
1- It may or may not accepted by your body.
Using a menstrual cup for the first few days will make you uncomfortable. But as time passes your body will adopt the change. But in very few cases, your body will not accept it and maybe you have to switch back to sanitary pads
2- Silicone Allergy
A mental cup is made up of silicone. So before using it, make sure your body should not be allergic to silicone. But no worries, there are other cups available made up of materials like rubber or thermoplastic elastomer (TPE).
As menstrual cups have to be inserted into the vagina. One must keep sure it is clean. Using a menstrual cup increase the chances of vaginal infection if the cup is dirty. So, make sure it is disinfected properly by washing it in the hot water.
Cleanliness should be the number one priority for a menstrual cup user. A user must wash her hands cleanly before inserting or withdrawing the menstrual cup.
5- Not Easy To Use
The insertion and withdrawal of the menstrual cup are sometimes messy. In some of the cases, you will find yourself in a situation where you want to remove the cup but unable to remove it.
6- Usage Period
The cup should be worn for 8 hours max and depending on the flow and capacity of the cup may need to b changed sooner. 12 hours is the maximum time to wear a menstrual cup. By wearing it for too long than the advised time it may increase the risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome or other infections.
Switching to a new product can be scary especially when you are inserting it in your vagina. But I know you will be adjusted to menstrual cup after two to three cycles. There are many reasons to switch to menstrual cups usually people don’t try different products due to price. Here it is a one-time investment for ten years. You will not be afraid of the odor because in menstrual cups you won’t smell anything. Your nightmare of leakage will vanish. You can wear your favorite white dress or jeans even in your menstrual cycle.
Menstrual cups are the best solution for our climate. It is reusable and recyclable whereas sanitary pads are not. They take 500 to 800 years to decompose. I don’t think we can wait for that much time. So, we have to take responsibility for our environment and take decisions according to it.
What is your experience with the menstrual cup? Share with us in the comment section.