PSA for heavy periods

Monday morning TMI post (periods):

I know there are some of you who suffer from really heavy periods.

I have a history of endo and fibroids and I usually have horrendous periods, like the type that a super plus tampon plus night time pad won’t work for longer than an hour. Plus debilitating cramps.

Some of you will have seen my previous post about the pretty CSPs (peacocks!) – I also mentioned I bought a new menstrual cup to try.

It was the Merula XL.

Game. Changer.

(Now, I have to confess that nobody really wants to think of anything relating to their vagina as XL. So you have to look beyond that nomenclature!)

If you have heavy periods and have tried something like the Mooncup or Diva cup (the most popular menstrual cups) and you have to empty it too often / it leaks due to the heaviness of your period, then I urge you to give the Merula XL a go.

It does look slightly alarmingly large when you compare it to the Mooncup (the cup I’d previously been using). I decided to try it and was pleasantly surprised.

I always struggled with the Mooncup stem and had to trim it all off as it felt horrible hanging out of me. But for some reason the Merula stem didn’t bother me at all. This also makes it really easy to remove as you just pull on the stem.

Inserting it took some practice. If you’re used to a cup then you will probably be fine but if you’re only used to tampons then you’ll probably have to give it a few tries. Even for a seasoned Mooncup user like I am, I still had to fiddle about a bit to get the best fit. But it was worth it.

The trick I found was to do the fold (c fold or punch fold, can be found on YouTube!) and place it downwards rather than upwards. For some reason this worked best for me. Then turn the cup around a bit to get it to open up. Or just jab it in the side a bit. Either way you need to make it open up or you can imagine it scrunched up inside you and the blood not going into the cup! I did place it wrongly once and got leaks.

But… I used this cup throughout my last period, in combination with the new peacock CSPs (cloth pads). And I had the best period in a long time! Not only did I barely leak at all (and I mean I went overnight), it was more comfortable and seemed to really help with my usual cramps.

I did leak a couple of times. Once because I hadn’t placed it correctly (but I imagine that will get easier as it already has) and once because I went overnight and had a long lie in (it was the weekend!) and it was my heaviest day. So usually I would have to be emptying the mooncup multiple times overnight. I’d say with the Merula on my heaviest day I probably need to empty it before I go to sleep and then not have a huge lie in and I’ll be fine.

The best thing is I had no significant leaks when out and about as I was worried about dealing with CSPs when I wasn’t in the house. The CSPs are much more comfortable and not “sweaty” like disposable sanitary pads can be. But I’m not sure about dealing with heavy bleeding onto them and having to carry a wet bag or something. Luckily didn’t have to deal with it and they just gave me added peace of mind. But really I can see myself not needing much backup once I’m used to the Merula.

In terms of comparison I believe it holds 50ml rather than the mooncup 30ml. It really does make a difference. And I found it aesthetically more pleasant to look at, if that makes any difference. With that and the pretty peacock pads, it’s time to pretty up periods! Haha.

Oh and the CSPs… I haven’t washed them yet so we shall see. I have them soaking in some cold water until my period is finished. You can rinse off the blood really easily I found, and then I folded them up into a little package (so it doesn’t look icky at all) and put them in a little container in the bathroom. My partner hasn’t even noticed so I don’t think it’s a big issue! (He does say he finds it funny that I sometimes leave my cup to dry!)

So there we have it… a possible solution to heavy periods. I even did a Zumba class with no leaks! And bonus: it’s green! If you are really suffering I’d suggest you give it a shot. It worked for me!

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