Menstrual Discs: What to Know Before Usage

A lot has been said about menstrual discs lately. It is the rave of the moment, especially on social media. But what exactly are menstrual discs?

A menstrual disc is an alternative insertable menstrual product that is designed to protect you for up to 12 hours, allow you to have clean sex during menstruation, and even tone down the intensity of menstrual cramps. There’s never a better time to be alive. Here are a few things you should know about menstrual discs before making use of them.

menstrual discs
Photo Credit: The Flex Company

What’s the difference between menstrual discs and menstrual cups?

What makes menstrual discs and menstrual cups similar is that they are both inserted into the woman’s vagina, and they both collect blood.

What makes the situation more confusing is that one of the first-release menstrual cups has since been rebranded as a menstrual disc – a very encouraging development when you compare the features of each.

Cups have the semblance of cups. Discs, of course, look just like discs.

A menstrual cup sits just below your cervix, extending into your canal. This depends on your brand. On the other hand, a disc fits into your fornix. The fornix is that part where your cervix and your vaginal canal meet.

How do you insert the menstrual disc?

You may have to do a little bit of practice to fit in the disc comfortably. But then, once it fits in, you will know because you will not feel anything at all.

Here’s a guide on how to insert menstrual discs:

  1. Wash your hands. This should be the first step. After all, those hands will be inserted into a very delicate part of your body.
  2. Position yourself well. You may sit over the toilet, stand with your leg up, or squat.
  3. Squeeze the sides of the menstrual disc so that it becomes the size of a tampon.
  4. Insert the pinched disc while it points back and down into your vagina. You’re better off sitting at a vertical angle so that your cervix is completely covered.
  5. Ensure you push the menstrual disc past the pubic bone. Push it as far as it can go so that the rim tucks just above the bone.
  6. Your menstrual disc is ready for use! Congratulations.

How can I remove my menstrual disc?

Removing menstrual discs is a tad messier than removing menstrual cups. What’s important is keeping it as level as possible when removing it so that the contents don’t spill.

Here’s how to remove a menstrual disc:

  1. First, wash your hands.
  2. Sit on the toilet. That’s the best spot – just in case your disc spills over.
  3. Put your index finger into your vagina and hook it beneath the rim, pulling it out.
  4. If it is difficult for you to reach the disc, bear down with your pelvic muscles as if you want to poop. Doing so remove the rim from behind your pubic bone.
  5. Turn the contents into the toilet, or shove it into the trash.

For how long can menstrual discs be worn?

Ladies can wear menstrual discs for up to 12 hours, even though there might need to change them often frequently depending on the heaviness of your flow.

How well can menstrual discs contain heavy flows?

First, what’s a heavy flow? A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that a woman has a heavy flow when she is forced to change her tampon or pad after less than two hours. Your flow is also considered heavy when you release quartered-sized clots or something larger.

Menstrual discs can contain heavy flows. However, you may need to change the discs often.

Regular menstrual discs can hold around 3 super tampons or 5 regular tampons – that’s roughly 5-6 teaspoons of fluid. A woman loses around 4-12 teaspoons of blood per menstrual cycle.

How do they hold up when you are under the sheets?

Menstrual discs do not take much space in your vagina, so, they’re a great option during sex. They sit like a diaphragm just beneath your cervix. So, as long as you insert them properly, neither you nor your partner should feel anything.

However, deep sexual intercourse could cause the disc to shift. According to some reviews, some users have reported feeling the disc and even experienced leakage while having sex.

So, there’s no better way to test its efficacy than to take it for a drive. After all, it is usually said that practice makes perfect, isn’t it?

Do menstrual discs reduce cramping?

They do not reduce cramping in themselves, but only menstrual pains.

According to Flex, one of the companies that produce menstrual discs, the reason for this is that menstrual disc is positioned in the widest parts of your vagina.

On the other hand, tampons sit in the lower extreme of the canal, which is narrower compared to the other. According to the theory, as the tampon fills with blood and expands, it triggers the cramping.

Quite logical isn’t it? Only that cramps are caused by uterine contractions. In the real sense of it, they have nothing to do with the vagina. And also, the vagina is elastic, so elastic that it can birth a human.

Yet still, many reviewers say they don’t experience intense pain when using menstrual discs compared to tampons. This may imply that menstrual discs are more flexible, and more comfortable, compared to the stiff tampons.

Can I reuse my menstrual disc?

It is at this point that menstrual cups top the game. Menstrual discs are mostly disposable. They cannot be reused. Therefore, they are not environmental-friendly.

What are the risks associated with the use of menstrual discs?

Presently, menstrual discs have no serious issues associated with it. However, menstrual cups are linked to toxic shock syndrome. A few cases have been reported.

Toxic shock syndrome might be a rare condition but it is quite serious. The underlying cause is a bacterial infection that triggers sudden symptoms, like low blood pressure, fever, and rash.

To minimize your risk of toxic shock syndrome, practice good hygiene. Wash your hands before inserting or removing the discs. Also, use the discs as instructed.

Where can I buy menstrual discs?

Menstrual discs can be bought online. You can also find some brands in department or drug stores.

Here are some good options you should consider and where you can buy them.

Softdisc

Its former name was Softcup. Softdisc is produced from medical-grade polymer. What’s more? It is hypoallergenic.

Softdisc is cleared by the FDA. It is also free of:

  • Phthalates
  • BPA
  • Silicone
  • Natural rubber latex

Softdisc is currently produced by the Flex Company who doubles as the producer of FLEX.

Buy Softdisc menstrual disc online

FLEX

FLEX menstrual disc is a product from the stables of FLEX Company, the producer of Softdisc. Both products share similar benefits. However, FLEX’s rim can warm your body and also fits better.

They share almost the same reviews with Softdisc.

Flex disc is available online.

Intima Ziggy cup

They are marketed as menstrual cups but the Ziggy cup is very similar to the menstrual disc, with just a few minor differences. For instance, they are reusable and cheaper. Rather than plastic, they are made of silicone.

Presently, the Intima Ziggy cup is the only reusable menstrual cup that’s suitable for use during intercourse because it has the shape of a disc and also looks like the part of the body where it sits.

Shop for Intima Ziggy cup online.

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