The female traveller, menstruation, and the Mooncup
I admit I toyed with Enid Blyton style titles for this blogpost. Five Go Camping with a Mooncup. Secret Seven and the Mystery of the Perfect Sanitary Protection. Third Form at Mooncup towers.. yeah I know, I'm losing the plot.
But! The mooncup is the perfect sanitary protection for the female traveller.
The mooncup has many benefits. If you need to deal with monthly bleeds, then you will no doubt be aware of some of the options around. They are mostly disposable like tampons made of cotton or rayon/cotton mix or sanitary towels made of paper and chemical gels, etc.
There are also reusable towels, but these, while very enviromentally friendly, are a pain to wash and dry when travelling, especially if you are camping and it's raining.
|Note : Menstruation does not attract bears according to science|
The mooncup is an environmentally friendly option, not adding to landfil, and it's a cheaper option, needing only a single purchase. It's internal sanitary protection too, so there is no odour (that might attract those pesky bears) . Use of the mooncup has lower risk of toxic shock syndrome and can be used when you have the contraceptive coil in situ as well. The mooncup is simple to clean, needing only a rinse with water.
So for the menstruating traveller the mooncup is really the only choice. You pack it and forget it, until you need it, it's the size of a small eggcup and lives in its own little cotton pouch until mother nature comes a'calling. Then it's easy to insert (wash your hands first, no one needs a fanny full of ferns) and it can be emptied and rinsed and reinserted as required, with no danger of TSS you can happily leave it in for several hours.
The mooncup sits low in the vagina, not high up near the cervix like a tampon does and so you may need to snip off a bit (or all) of the stem before you use it. The act of insertion and removal takes a bit of practice too, both to get insertion right and to ensure you've got a safe 'seal' once it's in. I recommend practicing at home especially in the shower. There is a knack but once you've practiced it becomes a very simple, quick easy procedure.
For long trips it's great, no need to learn to ask for sanitary protection in foreign languages if you are travelling around Europe, no worries about running out of supplies halfway up a mountain, and no problem disposables to dispose of in the wild, just a little blood to empty and bury along with any other body wastes (not near the camp! Think bears!)