The Benefits of Menstrual Cups: A Pelvic Floor Specialist's Perspective

The Benefits of Menstrual Cups: A Pelvic Floor Specialist's Perspective

Reviewed by a professional - Alyssa HariprashadĀ 

I never thought Iā€™d see the day where there are many different options for period products!

I am a pelvic floor physical therapist working in Manhattan, NY and I can easily tell you that I always receive questions from patients about different period products. I am the type of provider that works with my patients to feel comfortable with whatever product they want to use, but I really love educating about menstrual cups.

Many of us are used to seeing tampons and pads on store shelves, but I love that there has been more of a buzz regarding menstrual cups! I should note, I am not against tampons or any other period products, but I think when used correctly, menstrual cups can be very beneficial for us.

What are some advantages of using a menstrual cup?

- A menstrual cup is environmentally friendly because theyā€™re reusable! Once I started using mine, I realized I was really helping the environment by not using as many products that we would need to consistently change / throw away.

Ruby Cup menstrual cup vs tampons

- You do not need to change them as often. Most cups can be worn for 8 hours or more!

- They end up being cheaper cost wise since you do not need to buy a new one often.

What are some concerns and how can we address them?

- Iā€™ve found that patients are nervous about inserting them - but this is where we can learn about our bodies better! It does take practice, but once the menstrual cup is placed, it shouldnā€™t hurt or cramp! Sometimes we need to angle the cup and learn how to relax our pelvic floors. I also suggest using lubrication in order to insert it.

- Is it safe / hygienic? I think what I love most about cups is the fact that they are reusable. Washing them readily along with looking at ingredients from the company are all important factors.

- What about heavy flow days / leakage? Itā€™s very important to make sure that it is sealed! Typically, they seal on their own once inserted, but you can always double check by moving your finger along the rim to make sure there are no folds.

How do physical therapists play a role?

I love teaching about how your pelvic floor can be impacted. Since your pelvic floor consists of muscles that will be holding the cup, itā€™s actually a great way to learn how to contract and relax these muscles properly in order to insert / remove the cup. Breath work is extremely important with this along with proper education.

All in all, menstrual cups are great and can be extremely beneficial. As always, if you are ever concerned about using a new type of product, it is always important to consult with your medical provider!

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