Menstrual bowls: reviews, instructions, choice, contraindications
Surely every girl and woman had to deal with the problems of discomfort and leakage that occur when using conventional tampons and pads during menstruation. However, to date, these tools have been replaced by a unique product that was developed by experienced specialists.
This is a silicone menstrual cup, which is able to save women from certain problems and provide complete freedom of action on critical days.
A bit of history
Means intended for intimate feminine hygiene have been invented since ancient times. Some of them replaced others and provided new opportunities to make life easier during the period of critical days. Today it is quite simple to imagine an analogue of modern sanitary pads or tampons. However, far few know about such a device as the menstrual cup.and the mention of it sometimes causes only surprise.
Interestingly, this device was developed in the 30s of the twentieth century. A container designed to collect menstrual fluid was patented in 1932. In the 1960s, these products were manufactured under the Tassaway brand. However, commercial success did not come to them then. Apparently, women in those years were not ready to recognize such hygiene products. The popularity of menstrual cup began to acquire later in Western Europe.
This happened in the late 80s when, in addition to rubber, which in many women causes allergic reactions, they began to use medical silicone and other hypoallergenic materials for their production.
As for Russia, here and today the menstrual cup is not popular and is far from the volume of demand for pads or tampons.
What it is?
Menstrual cup, which is also called capa, outwardly represents a container, made in the form of a small cap. It is introduced into the vagina at a time when menstrual discharge occurs.
The material for the manufacture of such a product is a high-quality medical silicone, thermoplastic elastomer or latex. Menstrual cup can be disposable.In this case, it is made from a specific type of polyethylene.
What is the menstrual cup for? Its main task is not to absorb menstrual discharge, as women's tampons or pads do, but to collect them in their hollow container.
Varieties of products
Menstrual cups are of two types:
- Bell shaped.They are made of thermoplastic elastomer, silicone or rubber. Such a menstrual cup is reusable. In this case, some manufacturers recommended its replacement every year, and others - after use for 5-10 years.
- Made of polyethylene and resembling a contraceptive diaphragm. This menstrual cup is disposable. It is discarded immediately after the first use. Produced such products and reusable. In this case, they are used again during one menstrual period.
How do menstrual cups function? The feedback from women confirms that the material from which such products are made is very flexible and flexible. Due to this capacity is able to take the form of the vagina, and when it is in contact with the walls does not appear injuries, muscle sprain or irritation.
The mechanism of action of the cup used on critical days is that it is able to create a vacuum after the injection. Capacity, if it is positioned correctly, opens, and fits snugly to vaginal muscles. This ensures the integrity of the tool on both sides.
Thanks to this, all the secretions are fully collected in their cup menstrual cup. Feedback from women also confirms that during critical days they can swim in a pool or in a pond without any problems. After all, water due to the tightness of the bowl does not penetrate.
Today, several manufacturers produce menstrual cups. Reviews of women say that each of them products differ somewhat in their size. But in general, all menstrual cups are divided into two groups. The first of these includes products, the size of which is designated as S. They also correspond to the markings "1" or "A". The second group of products has a size L, which also correspond to "2" or "B".
As a rule, the first (small) type of bowls is intended for women aged 25 to 30 years who have not yet become pregnant.Products with a large size are intended for those women who have already given birth or have stepped over the threshold of their thirty years of age.
As a rule, these two groups are quite enough for each of the women to choose the most comfortable product for themselves. But what else needs to be considered when menstrual cups are picked up? Feedback from women confirms that the determination of the desired size of the product is a very individual matter. For example, the first group is recommended for those who have not yet given birth, have a fragile physique and not very heavy discharge on critical days. The second type of menstrual cups should be chosen for themselves by women who have given birth, as well as those who have undergone surgery on the genitals (including curettage and abortion). Size L is also intended for women who have a large build or heavy periods. But sometimes even giving birth, but at the same time a miniature woman chooses for herself the bowl of the first type.
When choosing a cap, you will also need to measure the height of the vagina. This can be done independently, but it is better if the woman seeks a gynecologist for advice.
How to choose a menstrual cup to make it as comfortable as possible when using it? The size of the product is determined by its length and diameter. To determine the parameters of the mouth guard, it is also necessary to clarify whether the cervix is high or low in the body. So, women who can touch her with a finger, as a rule, fit short bowls. But all this, again, is very individual.
The appropriate size of the menstrual cup is most often selected by sampling several options from different manufacturers. These companies adhere to the following standards:
- The Czech company LadyCup offers large bowls with a diameter of 46 mm and a length of 53 mm, and small bowls, respectively, 40 and 46 mm;
- the Czech company Mooncup produces large products with a diameter of 46 mm, whose length is 50 mm, and small ones, respectively, 43 and 50 mm;
- the Czech manufacturer Yuuki manufactures large products with a diameter of 47 mm and a length of 57 mm, and small ones - 42 and 48 mm;
- Finnish company Lunette offers large bowls of 46 mm in diameter, 52 mm long, and small ones - 41 and 47 mm, respectively.
The choice of the bowl is made taking into account such an indicator as its softness. Products made of rigid material, suitable for those women who have strong vaginal muscles, or those who have not yet given birth.
Menstrual bowls are released with various "tails". These devices can be flat or tubular, in the form of a ring or ball. And sometimes in the products "tails" is not at all.
Bowls designed to collect discharge on critical days are offered by manufacturers in a variety of colors. They can be not only transparent or white, but also have a huge range of various shades. What color to choose a woman? It will depend on her personal preferences. But it should be borne in mind that colored products will maintain an aesthetic appearance for a longer period of time. But, on the other hand, this is bad, as it will be difficult to visually determine their purity.
To the menstrual cup instructions for use must be attached. Nevertheless, a woman will need a little practice in order to start self-inserting mouth guard without any problems. In general, such manipulation will not cause any difficulties after 2-4 cycles.
Like a tampon, the bowl is inserted directly by hand. This procedure can be pre-studied according to the instructions, as well as get acquainted with it by video tutorials.Following all the recommendations, you can significantly speed up the process and facilitate your work.
How to enter the menstrual cup? First of all, you need to thoroughly wash your hands, using soap. This protects against infection. After you need to decide on the pose. It is most convenient to introduce this tool lying or standing, raising one foot on any surface, as well as sitting on the toilet or squatting. That is how someone will be more comfortable. It should be remembered that the vaginal muscles should be in a relaxed state. This will make inserting the menstrual cup much easier.
In the next step of the procedure, the product is moistened with water or treated with a lubricant having a water base. Next, the cap is folded in half. This will make it easier to insert it into the vagina.
After that, it is necessary to push the labia with the left hand, and with the right hand to advance the bowl so that the tip of its tail is at a depth of 1 to 2 cm. If the product is inserted deeper, then some leakage is likely.
Next, the menstrual cup must be properly located in the woman's body.To make it happen and the product has taken the necessary position, it should be rotated around its axis by the base. At the same time, the material of the cap, which softens a little after entering the body, adheres tightly to the vaginal walls, preventing the liquid from flowing out.
With the correct location of the mouth guard, the woman will not feel it when moving or when changing her posture.
Use of the product
So, the cap was inserted according to the instructions. What to do with it next? How to use the menstrual cup?
It is worth remembering that, unlike gaskets or tampons, the product does not absorb secretions. It simply collects them in its capacity. The physiology of the female body provides that menstrual flow should flow freely out. A cup inserted into the vagina prevents this.
According to the manufacturers, kapu can be left inside the body for up to 12 hours. After all, it will fit into a lot more discharge than a pad or tampon. As a rule, the capacity of the menstrual cup varies from 25 to 37 ml. Some women believe that their discharge is much more abundant. However, it is not.On average, the body loses from 30 to 120 ml during the day. And this is from 2 to 8 tablespoons. Moreover, the allocation volume of 60 ml is already considered abundant.
How to use the menstrual cup? As already mentioned, its emptying should be done every twelve hours. However, in the case of strong discharge, this can be done more often.
To get a mouthpiece from the vagina you need for her tail. But it should be borne in mind some nuances. If you simply pull the tip of the bowl, the product will not budge. At this point, some women believe that inserting the container is much easier than removing it later. How should the cup be stretched out? To do this, first of all you need to wash your hands. And it must be done with soap and water. After groping the base of the bowl, which should be a little push with your fingers. Such movements will violate the integrity of the tray, which due to this stretches quite freely.
It is worth remembering that a similar procedure is carried out on the toilet, because with this, the discharge collected in the tank can be spilled. If the product is disposable, then it is immediately discarded. After that, insert another cap.If the bowl is reusable, then it is cleaned of secretions, washed under running water, washed with warm soapy water and dried a little. Only after this capa can be used again.
Kapa can serve for 10 years. If it is reusable, then after the completion of critical days, the product is boiled in water for about 15 minutes. Next, it is placed in a bag that lets air through (it is usually sold complete with a cup).
Before using the kapu again washed with soap and water.
Does the menstrual cup have contraindications? Despite the fact that this tool appeared almost a century ago, due to its low prevalence, experts cannot give exact answers about when it is strictly prohibited to use it. Cons of the menstrual cup:
- the risk of the spread of pathogenic bacteria, which is triggered by stagnant phenomena that occur when the contents accumulate;
- the likelihood of secretions in the cap, back into the uterus, which provokes the development of endometriosis;
- the inability to use the product by the virgins, as the careless introduction of a mouth guard can damage the chaff;
- the likelihood of discomfort in the anus and perineum;
- the need to select posture introduction;
- the importance of quickly and carefully removing the product so that the liquid does not overflow.
But even if a woman is completely healthy and the gynecologist has nothing against her use of the menstrual cup, it must be borne in mind that some problems during the operation of the caps are still possible. After all, its use will require certain skills. For some women, this sometimes becomes a serious obstacle. During folding the cup slips out of the hands. The procedure and its elimination is not simple, which sometimes leads to the fact that the contents of the container is poured.
But even with the right introduction, especially in the first time of application, the cup often delivers some discomfort simply because it is felt inside. This should not be.
Another disadvantage of the menstrual cup is the price of the product. It is quite high, and the purchase of the product will be beneficial only if you use it as long as possible. However, not always a woman can get used to the silicone capacity in her body or decides to change it as often as possible.In this case, the purchase of the product will be unprofitable.
Sometimes it becomes extremely difficult to use the kapa compliance with the necessary rules of hygiene. Especially if the woman is on the road, in a public place, in nature, etc. After all, after removing the product must be thoroughly washed.
What are the benefits of using a menstrual cup?
- Safety and health. The vagina when using caps works in its normal mode. It is self-cleaning from excreta while maintaining the humidity of the walls, which is very important for protection against damage and infections. The material for the manufacture of bowls is silicone or natural rubber, which does not allow bacteria to multiply. The product contains no additives, hazardous chemicals or bleach. And in this caps are much better than tampons. After all, the latter are made from fibers of viscose or cotton, which are previously specially processed and bleached. After this procedure, dioxins remain in the product material. These are byproducts of the bleaching process. They are cumulative poisons classified as dangerous xenobiotics.In this regard, the use of such products for women is highly undesirable. In addition, after the introduction of tampons dry vagina. Thus, they provoke the development of infections, as well as toxic shock syndrome. Many women have seen a decrease in menstrual flow and a decrease in spasms after switching from using tampons to using the bowl.
- Purity. The use of bowls is highly hygienic. In addition, the cap can be subjected to additional sterilization. In connection with the separation of fluid from the walls of the vagina and the lack of air during use means less odors appear.
- Convenience. Depending on the volume of discharge, the bowl is worn for up to 12 hours. You can enter it before the onset of menstruation, so as not to be left without protection on the road, in nature, etc. In addition, the use of a mouth guard is not prohibited even at night. The product is perfect for sports activities, as it is fixed very securely and unnoticed outside. During menstruation, you do not need to carry extra caps. In addition, do not worry that the product will fall out. After all, it holds due to the vacuum created very reliably.
- Saving.The price of the menstrual cup is in the range of 1 to 2 thousand rubles. The specific cost depends on the brand and model. If we consider that a woman, as a rule, uses about 180 tampons during a year, then their cost will be 1,800 rubles. Thus, the cap can pay off within the first year.
- Environmental friendliness. Over 16,800 disposable tampons or pads are thrown away on average by a woman throughout her life. If we consider that the use of the menstrual cup can last up to 10 years, it will become obvious that its use will significantly reduce the volume of waste transported to landfills, which later through the soil get into sewer systems, seas and rivers. It should be noted that in the production of gaskets and tampons are used not only synthetic bases, but also wood, the receipt of which leads to deforestation. The process of manufacturing these products is associated with the chemical processing of the materials obtained. This pollutes the environment and requires a significant amount of electricity.
It is necessary to make a decision on the use of the menstrual cup only after all existing risks from using the product have been taken into account, and its advantages have been considered.