6 Compelling Reasons to Make the Switch to Medfem Menstrual Cups
Though there are few historical accounts of how the ancient woman managed her periods, it is presumed that the woman commonly used washable cloths and crude tampons made from wooden sticks wrapped in lint.
It remained a DIY type of thing until the introduction of the hosier sanitary pads in the late 1800s, particularly awkward-looking contraception that promised to keep homemade sanitary napkins in place.
In 1896, the first commercial disposable pad was to market by Johnson & Johnson. “Lister’s Towels” were made of cotton covered in gauze. Improvements, like an adhesive backing and the addition of “wings,” didn’t come along until the 1970s.
Tampax, the first modern tampon made from strips of cotton fibers connected to a cord, was patented by Dr. Earle Haas in 1931.
The last option available to women was the menstrual cup, a flexible bell-shaped device that fits inside the vagina. Patented in 1937 by Leona Chalmers, it was the first feminine product made by women for women. Nowadays, most menstrual cups are made with medical-grade silicone, are easily bendable, and come in various sizes.
Between these three options, tampons are the most popular choice among women under the age of 40 today. And on the surface, it’s easy to see why: tampons are small, discrete, and allow us more freedom of movement. But dig a little deeper, and you will begin to see some of the hidden costs of using tampons and pads:
1. Tampon & Pad Manufacturers Aren’t Required to Disclose Ingredients
Despite their use on a susceptible and absorptive part of the female anatomy, tampon and pad makers do not have to list the ingredients and materials used in their products on the label or packaging. Because they are classified as “medical devices” by the FDA, full disclosure is recommended but not mandatory, Bowing to public pressure. Some companies have voluntarily agreed to disclose some but not all ingredients used to make their products. However, consumers are still being kept in the dark on the composition of fragrances, adhesives, and other secret chemicals.
Since menstrual cups are simple devices that do not contain fibers or fragrances, the materials used to make them are listed on the package. Our Medfem Menstrual cups are made from 100% medical-grade silicone, free of plastic, BPA, latex, and artificial dyes.
2. Using Tampons & Pads Increases Your Exposure to Toxins
The interior and exterior parts of lady bits (the vagina and vulva, respectively) are structurally unique compared to other body tissues. Chemicals and toxins are more readily absorbed in this area and circulated through the rest of the body, as evinced by a study where women were given an estrogenic hormone either orally or vaginally. The results showed that, when administered vaginally, the drug was found at levels 10 to 80 times higher in the body than when the exact dosage was taken by a woman orally.
Independent testing and analysis of the chemical constituents of tampons and pads revealed a dangerous mixture of toxins present in these products:
Tampons – Most tampons are made with cotton and rayon fibers, then bleached white with chlorine. The bleaching process contaminates the end product with dioxins and furans – a family of highly toxic chemicals and pollutants that have been linked to reproductive and developmental problems, hormone disruption, cancer, and damage to the immune system. Additionally, traces of pesticides and herbicides have been detected, as well as a litany of chemicals contained within fragrances, many known irritants, carcinogens, and allergens.
Sanitary Pads – Likewise, Sanitary pads contain the same materials as tampons: bleached cotton and rayon. Not only does using pads increase exposure to the same mix of toxins, but independent testing of all branded sanitary pads also results in carcinogens like styrene, chloroform, and the irritant acetone and chloromethane toxins.
3. Using Tampons Increases the Risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome
Any woman who has used tampons has likely seen the notice in the box warning of tampon use and toxic shock syndrome (TSS).
Though rare, TSS is a severe and life-threatening illness. While you won’t develop TSS simply by using tampons alone, it is a complication when the infectious bacteria staphylococcus aureus is already present in the body. About one-third of the US population are carriers of S. aureus, and many people never show symptoms.
4. Tampons Disrupt the Delicate Ecosystem of the Vagina
Tampons are, by design, incredibly absorptive. Unfortunately, they do not discriminate between menstrual flow and the good bacteria that keep things down in perfect harmony. Using tampons can dry you out, disrupt pH levels, and trap harmful bacteria within. When vaginal pH becomes too basic, it creates an environment for harmful bacteria to thrive. This can lead to unpleasant things like a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis.
While tampons are intended to absorb, menstrual cups are designed to collect – an essential distinction in maintaining a healthy vaginal ecosystem. Because all the good bacteria stay put during menstruation, cups can help keep things ticking as they should.
5. Disposable Feminine Products Generate Tons of Waste
The inherent disposability of tampons and pads means they leave a pretty enormous environmental footprint. It is estimated that the average woman will use 15,000 tampons or pads over her lifetime.
In addition to the massive amount of waste this generates (which is only more guilt-inducing when we see there are eco-friendly alternatives), these feminine care products pollute the ground and water since they contain toxic substances and persistent organic toxic.
Menstrual cups, on the other hand, are reusable. They can easily last ten years or more when properly taken care of.
6. The Cost of Disposables Adds Up
If you spend 330rs on tampons or pads each time you menstruate, you’re shelling out 3800rs each year on products to plug or soak up your period. Assuming your menstrual cycles span 40 years, you’ll have paid out 150000 rs for tampons or pads over your lifetime – or the cost of a nice vacation!
By switching to sustainable and reusable products like menstrual cups, which cost between 1000 rs and 2000rs and last a decade, they will pay for themselves in no time.
The Final Word:
When it comes down to it, the products used to manage your period are a deeply personal choice. Even so, we should still have all facts about what tampons and pads could be doing to our bodies, the environment, and our wallets.
Menstrual cups offer better protection against leaks and spills than tampons and pads. Although there is a bit of a learning curve when using them for the first time, once you get the hang of it, you won’t even feel it.
Switching from tampons and pads to menstrual cups is quickly catching on. The market for cup sales has grown 20 times faster than other feminine hygiene products within the last year. And according to at least one study, women are more likely to use a menstrual cup if they know someone who already does. Typically, women who have made the switch love the cup and never look back.
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