Chances are you know someone who swears by the menstrual cup. These silicone wonders can be worn longer than tampons, and they don't leak. But can they actually soothe period cramps, as so many people claim?
According to Heather Bartos, MD, a board-certified ob-gyn and founder of Badass Women, Badass Health, there's no reason to believe that menstrual cups can prevent or reduce cramps, though there's certainly no harm in giving them a try. "Menstrual cramps tend to stem from the uterine muscles, which contract and cause the cramping. These muscles are nowhere near the menstrual cup," Dr. Bartos told POPSUGAR.
She explained that no scientific studies have shown a correlation between menstrual cups and reduced cramps, and while some patients report having fewer or less painful cramps while using a menstrual cup, others find the opposite to be true. Again, it's unlikely that a menstrual cup could cause cramps because they originate in the uterus, but using the wrong size cup or wearing it incorrectly could trigger discomfort in the vagina or cervix.
If you feel any pain while wearing a menstrual cup, make sure it fits properly and that the stem is trimmed to the appropriate length.