Forget all the other cups you have come to know. Teacup, mbu Coffee cup mbu World Cup. Do you know about a menstrual cup? A menstrual cup is a silicone-based product, shaped like a bell with a stem. It is made up of medical-grade silicone and it’s reusable. Perhaps you don’t know what this silicon kiboozi is all about, worry not. What you should definitely know is that it is used to collect the menstrual blood and is used by inserting inside women’s vagina, where it collects the blood. The same cup can be sterilised each cycle and be used for up to 5 -10 years.
Now that you have a vague idea of what a menstrual cup is, let’s learn the ABC of how to insert it inside the vagina.
Let’s talk menstrual cup insertion
Insertion during the first few times can be tricky, so first and foremost, relaxoooo, and don’t overthink it. When we are tense, the pelvic muscles (when they contract, the organs are lifted and the openings to the vagina, anus, and urethra are tightened) and can make the insertion somewhat challenging.
You will thank us later, for now, let’s go step by step on how to effectively get the menstrual cup inserted.
Step 1; Wash your hands with soap and clean water
Step 2; Hold the menstrual cup with the open side facing up and the narrow part with a funnel-like structure facing down.
Step 3; Fold the wide part of the cup to make a C shape or pinch one side to make a corn shape
Step 4: Position yourself in a comfortable position to ably insert the cup in the vagina with the C or corn shaped side going in first, you can squat, lay on the bed facing up, put one leg on a raised ground, half squat.
Half squatting is an ideal position for insertion. So, how the cup stays inside is basic physics. It opens up inside the vagina and then adheres to the wall with the suction created, so that the blood only flows inside it, and doesn’t leak from the corners into the underwear. (The word ‘panty’ freaks me out, too!) For easy removal, just reach inside, and pinch the bottom of the cup, to relax the suction. As a result, the cup loosens its hold inside the vagina and comes out with a little bit of a pull. Most menstrual cups can stay in for up to 12 hours before being emptied and rinsed. For a guide on what size to order, better start out with the small size, and change in case of heavier than expected flow.
So, based on a few questions that I have had myself, and the ones I got from my female friends who used it, I’ve compiled a list of myths I can bust, straight up.
The cup doesn’t prevent peeing, and no, the urine doesn’t go even go near the cup. That’s because the urine comes out of the urethra, situated above the vagina. So, it’s a total separation of concerns.
Peeing with a menstrual cup
The blood doesn’t flow back into the vagina if you lie back or even do a headstand. The blood flows from a tiny hole in the cervix into the vagina, which works like a valve; the blood flows unidirectionally from there, as a result of which it can’t climb up the cervix again. The biggest of myths is surrounding the virginity and how it might be stolen. Not a chance.