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What are the advantages of using a menstrual cup?

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Here are some advantages to using a menstrual cup:

Most silicone and rubber menstrual cups must be removed before sex. But the soft, disposable ones are designed with sex in mind. They look like a diaphragm, so they’re shaped like a dome (not like the usual bell). Your partner can’t feel them, and there’s no blood to worry about.

  • It’s eco- and wallet-friendly. In fact, a reusable cup that costs $30 to $40 can last up to 10 years. That means less waste in landfills and less money over time. These benefits don’t apply to disposable brands, though.
  • You can leave it in for 12 hours. Tampons need to be changed every 4 to 8 hours, depending on your flow. But cups can stay in longer, so they’re good for overnight protection. And once you get the hang of inserting it, there’s no need to wear a backup pad or liner.
  • It holds more. A menstrual cup can hold 1 ounce of liquid, roughly twice the amount of a super-absorbent tampon or pad. The difference can be a comfort on your heavy flow days.
  • You can have mess-free sex.
  • There’s less odor. Menstrual blood can start to smell when it’s exposed to air, but your cup forms an airtight seal.
  • It’s safe. Experts say it’s safer than a tampon because it has a lower risk of toxic shock syndrome, a bacterial infection -- and compared with a pad, there’s no chance of chafing or rash.

From: What’s a Menstrual Cup? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Cleveland Clinic: “Tired of Tampons? Here Are Pros and Cons of Menstrual Cups.”

North, B. , February 2011. Journal of Women’s Health

Howard, C. , June 2011. Canadian Family Physician

Wiebe, ER. , August 2012. Conception

Healthy Women: “Tampons, Pads, or Menstrual Cups? What’s Right for You?”

Parent Guide: “Best Menstrual Cup for You: The Definitive Guide.”

Kickstarter: “The Menstrual Cup, Reinvented.”

Playtex: “TSS Facts.”

Columbia Health: “The Ins and Outs of Menstrual Cups -- How Do They Differ From Tampons and Pads?”

The Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide, February 2011.

The Diva Cup web site.

Intimina web site.

Softcup web site.

Mooncup web site.

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on April 19, 2019

SOURCES:

Cleveland Clinic: “Tired of Tampons? Here Are Pros and Cons of Menstrual Cups.”

North, B. , February 2011. Journal of Women’s Health

Howard, C. , June 2011. Canadian Family Physician

Wiebe, ER. , August 2012. Conception

Healthy Women: “Tampons, Pads, or Menstrual Cups? What’s Right for You?”

Parent Guide: “Best Menstrual Cup for You: The Definitive Guide.”

Kickstarter: “The Menstrual Cup, Reinvented.”

Playtex: “TSS Facts.”

Columbia Health: “The Ins and Outs of Menstrual Cups -- How Do They Differ From Tampons and Pads?”

The Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide, February 2011.

The Diva Cup web site.

Intimina web site.

Softcup web site.

Mooncup web site.

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on April 19, 2019

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What are the disadvantages of using a menstrual cup?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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