Active Woman With Sensitive Bladder
I discovered divacup model 1 several years ago and found it comfortable, except the stem was irritating so I cut off. It’s always been consistently difficult to urinate and occasionally I have felt a false sense to urinate. I have to contract my pelvic muscles quite a bit to empty my bladder but have no issue with incontinence. When I first started using the cup, it wasn’t a deal breaker because it was sealed tight and it worked for all my vigorous activities on the heavier first 2 days…no leaks, no problems. Now I’m pushing 38 (no childbirth, medium cervix) and the first 2 days are rough…med/heavy flow and cramping. I have leaked several times overnigh ruining sheets, clothes, and a $350 sleeping bag. I assume I need more capacity and a softer cup, but I’m an outdoorsy athlete. I want the ability to be active without access to running water on my heavy flow days (no removal/leaks) while relieving the pressure on my uthetra. I was thinking maybe a different shape cup/rim, or softer cup with a firmer rim? Wouldn’t I need a firmer cup to prevent leaks? I want comfort and capacity but need performance.
What brand/firmness/shape/size do you recommend based on my personal circumstances?
Ultimately I want to alleviate the pinched urination so I’m not forcing relief, prevent ruining my bedding overnight during heavier flow, and still be able to hit the mountain/gym/public pools with confidence.
Side question: even though I consider my pelvic floor strong, would an egg or exercises help relieve the sensitive bladder issue when using a menstral cup?
Thanks for your feedback so I can get this next purchase right!
I’m sorry that you’re experiencing some difficulties with the Diva Cup. If you have a slow urine stream, feel like you need to urinate more frequently, feel like you don’t empty your bladder completely when you do, or if you have constipation, the cup is definitely causing some pressure issues and is too firm.
Things to factor in:
I might suggest a cup that is a little softer than the Diva 1, but larger in size for the capacity or a bell-shaped cup. Is there a reason that you chose size 1? If it was based on age and/or no childbirth, I don’t go by those guidelines. Instead, I go by what might feel comfortable and suit your menstrual needs.
The Diva 1 is the same length as the Diva 2 and the diameter of the cups are only different by a couple of millimeters.
So, that being said, here are some suggestions based on the info you shared in no particular order.
Casco Cup large- This cup is the most similar to the Diva Cup in shape and size. It is softer but has a higher capacity at 40ml to the rim.
I personally haven’t done any extreme activities while using this cup, but haven’t experienced any collapsing or leaking wearing it while stationary cycling, pilates, or Trikking (scooter with ski-like movements).
LaliCup medium or large – These cups have a unique channel pattern around the body. These channels help the cup body to fold up smaller and easier while also helping the cup to open after the fold is released. This cup is a bell-shaped cup with a regular style rim and won’t ride up too high like some other bell-shaped cups with flared rims.
Medium size LaliCup – The rim of the medium is softer than the Diva. The body of the cup is shorter but including the stems, the total length is a little longer than the Diva. This cup holds 36ml to the rim (about 9 or 10 ml more than the Diva 1).
I have gone hiking, biking, stationary cycling, walking, pilates, yoga, and done Zumba while using this cup with no issues.
Large Size LaliCup – The rim of the large is about the same firmness as the Diva 1. The channels on this cup allow each area to “cave in” a bit so that it doesn’t apply too much extra pressure. The body is a tad shorter than the Diva 1 but the total length with the stem makes it longer. This cup holds 40ml to the rim.
I have done all of the above activities while using this cup and also have gone cave exploring which included climbing, sliding, shimmying, scooting, crawling, wiggling, scaling…etc through cave-ins, rock falls and a lava wall. I had a heavy period and emptied my cup before driving to the site (about 3 hours away), exploring two caves (the harder one was all uphill gain 350 ft) of about 4 miles or so. Arrived at around 10am, got back to the car around 6pm, showered and emptied my cup at around 8pm. I did use a back-up cloth pad just in case but there was not one single drop of blood.
This cup was the BOMB!
Both sizes of the LaliCup have a wider diameter than the Diva 1 but folds up to an insertion point that is about the same.
I can’t guarantee that this cup will be the exact same for you since our bodies are different but I think it might be closer to what you’re looking for.
As for the Kegel tools, if you already have strong PFM, using them might not be a good thing.
The pelvic floor can actually get fatigued if they don’t relax. It can cause smaller contracts than normal when they are needed. Just like any other muscle in your body, if it’s overactive, it can’t perform its job correctly.
Muscles need to contract and relax equally for a muscle to be strong, including the PFM.
Difficulty emptying your bladder is one of the symptoms of an overactive PFM. Although the cup may also be a factor. If you do in fact have an overactive PFM, generally your abdominals are too. It might be hard to recognize, but trying doing some belly breathing and concentrate on if you’re holding your abdomen tight. You might want to look up some info about this to see if something that you actually have. I don’t want to worry or diagnose you.
Anyhow, sorry for the wall of text. I hope that I answered your questions and gave some suggestions worth looking into. If you have additional questions, please feel free to reply 🙂 Until then, happy window shopping and good luck!