I have been meaning to switch to menstrual cups for years but never got around to it, which I now obviously deeply regret. It's now officially time to switch to cups, as tampons are now strictly forbidden and I abhor everything about pads. As such, I need to have the right cup before my next cycle, and won't have any other options should I have chosen the wrong one. After much research, I am currently leaning toward a small Lunette Selene, primarily because I believe I have a low cervix and I like pretty colors.
While I am worried about the fit, my main concern is my health. TSS has a very high rate of recurrence and I would like to avoid another trip to the ICU if at all possible. So what I'm looking for is:
- any anecdotal evidence about Lunette/other brands & health (tendency toward infections, difficulty cleaning a particular style, a cup that chafed, et cetera) that might indicate that a certain kind of cup is less safe for a TSS survivor (for instance, I am extremely wary of hollow-stemmed cups)
- advice for hyper-vigilant cleanliness when using cups (storage in particular--those bags are cute, but they don't seem safe for me) as what is clean enough for most people is probably not clean enough for my body
- thoughts on wearing medical gloves while handling and using a cup (the skin on my hands is peeling severely as a result of the TSS) and whether that might make things more difficult
- any other advice you think of that I haven't had the foresight to request
- and finally, if anyone here also happens to be a TSS survivor (or has a compromised immune system that requires a similar level of paranoia) your input would be especially appreciated
Me: I'm 23, I'm not a virgin, I'm not currently sexually active because it's hard to feel sexy when your reproductive organs have just tried to kill you, I live in the US. I'm very tall and very slim, and prior to my TSS I usually got my exercise by walking a few miles a week and occasional yoga, which some cup manufacturers seem to care about? I can only afford one cup right now as I had to take a few weeks off work for my time in hospital and post-hospital recovery, otherwise I'd probably buy three and Goldielocks the situation.
Cervix: I believe my cervix is low because it's not too difficult to reach, and it seemed like sometimes my tampons were pushed in past my cervix so that a portion at the top didn't get bloody.
Flow, etc: I used to have extremely heavy periods, but a few years of HBC use rendered them manageably heavy, say one super plus in three hours at the peak followed by a super every four to six hours for a while and then tapering off very quickly, all told usually lasting just two to four days. (Despite my heavy flow I'm rather set on a small size cup because I'd rather make more frequent trips for a smaller volume cup for my health's sake--if I'm mistaken in my research and should be using a larger cup because of a heavy flow, please let me know.) I used to have inhumanly painful cramps, but after taking and then discontinuing use of HBC, my cramps are down to the level where I can at least still do my coursework while on prescription painkillers, which is a major improvement. Basically, all of my reproductive muscles are Beast Mode strong.
TSS: I'm open to answering any questions anyone may have about my experience with Toxic Shock Syndrome. Seems only fair. I'm kind of like a unicorn and there's a lot of misinformation out there that I'd love to shut down.