Peeing with a Menstrual Cup: The Urge to Purge
So you’ve finally converted to a menstrual cup. Congratulations! You’re taking big steps in choosing the best period options for your body, wallet, and the planet.
You’ve started bleeding, in your cup goes, and then wham! Wait – “How do I pee with this thing in?!” or “Why do I always feel like I need to pee when wearing a menstrual cup?!”.
These are two very normal reactions of new period cup users.
Luckily for you, we’ve got answers and tips to help guide on your menstrual cup journey and peeing.
Can You Pee with a Cup In?
To put it simply, yes, of course. Depending on your flow, you can wear your menstrual cup for up to twelve hours. As you can imagine, it would be a pain in the butt – or vagina – to have to take it out after time you had to urinate.
For women and people with vulvas, there’s a whole lot going on in one small area, which can make things feel complicated when adding an extra product to the party.
I’m sorry if this is painfully obvious, but pee and period blood do come out different holes. That’s not to say that having a cup in your vaginal canal can’t impact your peeing habits, or vice versa. This is because the bladder, urethra and vagina are cozying up real close to each other.
Find The Right Cup and Position
If your menstrual cup is making peeing more complicated, or giving you any anxiety, you’ll want to make sure that you, one – have the right cup for your body, and two – make sure it’s in at a comfortable position.
If your cup feels like it’s taking up too much space in there, check out this menstrual cup size guide, you may need a new one that fits you better.
You can also try wearing your cup lower in your vaginal canal, so it puts less pressure on your bladder, or readjust it until it feels like it’s in a prime position.
In some cases, it may just be a new sensation that you get used to after a few wears.
Will it Fall Out When I Pee?
Your cup is designed to stay in place when you pee, but of course – accidents happen.
If your cup does happen to fall out, and into the toilet, just be sure to properly sanitize it before reinserting, to prevent a nasty infection from bacteria that live in toilets and urine, like E. coli and Staphylococcus.
For people who tend to pee outside, or have squat toilets, versus sit down ones, this may cause your cup to be more likely to fall out, because of the angle of your pelvic floor muscles and vagina.
If the toilet scaries are still getting to you, again you can take it out when you pee, but who wants to go through that hassle?
What about The Urge to Pee?
Your cup is nestled in there and stays put when peeing, but the pressure on your bladder, is making it feel like you need to go all the time!
Like we mentioned, you may need to try a different cup or reposition it, but if you’re still experienced the urge
Here’s a little advice from people who have urinary incontinence or feel like they need to pee all the time – fully void. This means trying to fully drain your bladder every time you pee. Go to the bathroom, do your business, stand up to change the position of your pelvic floor muscles, and then try to pee again. This method should give you some relief, whether or not you have a cup in.
Don’t Hold it In
Your pee that is, not your cup, that holds itself in.
If you’re feeling like you need to pee more with a cup in, don’t torture yourself, let it out! Some people find themselves needing to pee more on their period, menstrual cup or not. This is because of a drop in the hormone progesterone. This hormone can cause water retention, aka bloating during your pre-menstrual phase. When it drops, you’re no longer holding on to all that water, and you may need to pee it out much more often than usual.
Holding your pee in can lead to uncomfortable urinary tract infections, which when left untreated can turn into bladder or kidney infections. Yikes!
Listen to your body and let it out when nature calls.
Menstrual cups are meant to make your life easier, but of course everyone’s individual anatomy requires different care when it comes to periods. It may take time to find the right cup and routine for your body and cycle, but when you do – there’s no turning back!
Natasha (she/they) is a full spectrum doula, reproductive health content creator, and sexual wellness consultant. Her work focuses on deconstructing the shame, stigma, and barriers people carry around birth, sex, and beyond, to help people navigate through their lives with more pleasure, softness, and sensuality. You can connect with Natasha on IG @spectrumoflovedoula.