Do you experience really heavy periods? Are you frustrated by having to change your pad or tampon every few hours?
Well, you’re not alone. One in five women globally experience heavy flow periods.
In this blog, we will dive into everything there is to know about heavy flow periods. Do you have a heavy flow? What causes this? What is the best period product to manage your heavy flow? Read on for answers!
how do i know if i have heavy flow periods?
In order to answer this question, let's first understand how much menstrual flow is normal (or considered to be normal!)
The average period lasts about 4 to 5 days and involves losing about 40ml to 60ml of blood. This is equal to about 3-4 tablespoons worth of fluid.
If your period lasts longer than this – say around 7 days (a condition that is medically known as menorrhagia) then it is safe to say that you experience heavy periods.
Alternatively, if your period lasts just 5 days but you tend to experience very heavy flow at any given time – this is also considered to be heavy periods.
Being forced to change your pad or tampon every few hours (or even every hour) due to leaks is a sign of heavy periods. Another sign is passing blood clots.
Many women experiencing heavy flow will bleed around 80ml to 90ml of blood in one menstrual cycle – that’s 6 to 8 teaspoons of fluid.
what causes heavy flow during periods?
The most common cause for heavy flow during periods is hormonal imbalances.
The two most important hormones that play a role in maintaining your reproductive health are progesterone and oestrogen.
If your body produces too much oestrogen, this can lead to a thickened uterine lining. As periods involve the shedding of this uterine lining, you will experience heavier periods when your lining is thicker.
Low levels of progesterone can also cause heavy bleeding. This is because without enough progesterone, the endometrial lining can get too thick, causing extra lining to shed and bleed during your menstrual cycle.
Finally, your thyroid gland may also play a role – if you have under-active thyroid glands, known as hypothyroidism, this can be a further cause of heavy periods.
This is because when you experience hypothyroidism, you might miss ovulation - causing your endometrial lining to shed and cause excessive bleeding.
menstrual cup or tampons, which is better for heavy periods?
While both menstrual cups and tampons are insertable period products, there are many differences in how they can manage heavy flow periods – so let’s explore this!
Tampons are made of absorbent cotton and sit inside your vaginal canal to absorb your period flow.
While you may not be able to feel them as much as sanitary pads due to tampons being insertable, you still need to change them as frequently as pads.
So for someone with heavy flow periods, this can be very inconvenient as you will constantly need to find a bathroom to change and dispose of your tampons.
Also, most tampons contain plastic as well as toxic and harmful chemicals which your body absorbs when you’re using them - so this is definitely something to keep in mind when deciding which period product to use.
On the other hand, good quality menstrual cups are made of medical grade silicone which is super safe for internal use. You can wear the Asan menstrual cup for up to 12 hours without having to change or empty it.
So if you’re wondering, is a menstrual cup good for heavy flow? The short answer is yes. In fact, Asan has a special heavy flow size that is designed specifically for heavy periods.
Even for someone with super heavy flow, you’ll still be able to wear the cup for at least 6 to 8 hours in one stretch - making it the best cup for heavy flow and so much easier than tampons.
what is the best menstrual cup for extremely heavy flow?
The best menstrual cup for super heavy flow is one that meets two criteria.
First, the cup should be firm enough to create a very good seal, which means it will not leak. The Asan heavy flow size is a great option as it is designed to be firm enough not to leak, while still very comfortable.
The second criteria is that the menstrual cup should hold as much fluid as possible. The Asan heavy flow size holds up to 30ml of fluid, which is roughly 3 times more than average tampon or pad.
Finally, because if its fantastic ring design, Asan’s menstrual cup is best beginners menstrual cup for heavy flow as it is super easy to insert and remove.
If you’re still not sure whether a menstrual cup is good for heavy flow and would like to read an Asan cup review for heavy flow periods, you can read this blog about Kaashvi, a 15-year old teenager comfortably using the Asan heavy flow cup.
frequently asked questions
Do menstrual cups hurt for virgins?
At Asan we believe that virginity is a social construct and does not have anything to do with using a menstrual cup.
Read this blog to learn more about using a menstrual cup as a virgin.
Why does my menstrual cup leak when I get heavy flow?
If your menstrual cup leaks when you get heavy flow, that’s most likely because the cup is not able to maintain its suction inside your vaginal canal due to period flow pressure.
Do menstrual cups reduce flow?
Scientifically, there is no proven way for a period product to alter the amount of menstrual fluid you produce.
That said, some users report that the Asan cup makes their period shorter compared to sanitary pads. This might be because the cup collects your flow closer to its source – rather than waiting for it to make its way more slowly onto a pad.
As the cup enables us to see and measure exactly how much we bleed, it creates a more accurate picture of how heavy periods really are. In reality we only bleed about a teaspoon of blood a day: not much at all!
Do menstrual cups increase cramps?
Menstrual cups do not increase cramps.
Again, while there is no scientific evidence, many Asan cup users claim that their cramps have actually reduced since making the switch to our cup.
Perhaps this is because many people forget they’re even on their period, as you can’t feel the cup inside you at all.
Can I use a menstrual cup for heavy discharge?
No, please don’t use a menstrual cup for anything other than to collect your period flow.
If you are experiencing abnormally heavy discharge, this might be a sign of a UTI or another infection. Please consult a doctor about this and external products such as liners or reusable cloth pads.
Ready to make the switch to the best menstrual cup for heavy flow? Shop here now.