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Using a menstrual cup with a heavy flow

TOTM reusable zero waste menstrual cup on a red background

Depending on size, a menstrual cup can hold up to 30ml of menstrual blood (based on size 3 cup). So, is it a good idea to use a cup if you have a very heavy flow?

We spoke to Jo who is diagnosed with menorrhagia (heavy menstrual bleeding) to talk about her experience using a menstrual cup with a heavy flow.

Managing a heavy bleed can be challenging. This is definitely the case for Jo, who since the age of fourteen has struggled with extremely heavy periods. If you have not caught up with Jo’s story, then you can catch up here. Now diagnosed with menorrhagia, Jo is constantly looking for ways to make her period more manageable. We, therefore, offered her a TOTM cup to trial for one period. Here’s Jo’s experience using the cup:

My experience using a menstrual cup with a heavy flow

“I wanted to try a cup to prevent using so many sanitary products during my periods. I also needed to try to prevent leaking during the day, due to heavy menstrual bleeding and clots.”

Why did you choose the TOTM cup?

“I was told it was softer than the one I had, and I wanted to support a company like TOTM that promotes sustainability and organic sanitary products. The cup came packaged in sugar cane packaging, and a 100% organic bag, so I knew I was doing the right thing for the environment as well as me.”

Please describe your experience when using the cup (as much detail as you would like to share)

“I was dubious because the last cup I bought looked the same. I had previously bought the correct size, but the rim was quite stiff and – because of this – I felt sick and bruised when I wore it. As soon as I held the TOTM cup, it felt softer and more malleable. Folding it was easier and when it was in, I didn’t feel discomfort at all. I also really appreciate the fact that the bottom of the bell is ridged, so it’s much easier to remove: no losing grip or slipping like you get with a smooth one.”

How did this compare to using a tampon?

“Personally, there’s no comparison. Even with an applicator, putting a tampon in feels dry and wrong. With a cup, you can measure how much blood loss there is, so it’s easier to monitor, especially if you chart your cycle like I do.”

Did you use the cup alongside another TOTM product when on your period?

Day pads

Are you happy to continue using the TOTM cup?

“I will definitely continue to use the cup. As I have menorrhagia, overnight I use TOTM night pads and period pants, but during the day it’s the cup, I only use one day pad as a precaution.”

Any additional feedback?

“As a scared cynic, I did not want to use the cup. I had heard about people trying different ones until they found the right one, but I was unsure. After two difficult births and my heavy periods, I didn’t exactly feel like I had an intact vagina! The cup has actually given me more confidence, but I never would have believed it from anyone else. It’s a very personal choice.”

Thanks to Jo for her switch story #SwitchStories! Curious to try a cup? You can check the range here. If you struggle with a heavy bleed, replacing lost nutrients post-period is so important. Catch up on these tips to get started.

Photo cred: Keith Davies

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