“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
― Benjamin Franklin
Prevention is a wonderfully frustrating thing. If a person does not use a tampon and they don’t get sick that is wonderful. It is frustrating that there is no way to prove that they would have gotten sick if they had used one. After yesterday’s post someone wrote that I was trying to cause mass hysteria. I understand how if you don’t know me or my story that the title of this blog may lend to that misconception. I assure you though that I do not want to make anyone panic. All I want to do is present another option, another opinion, and maybe, just maybe prevent someone else from going through what I went through. You want to know what causes panic? Not being able to breathe. When my lungs filled with fluid and I succumbed to Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) I was panicked. Want to know what causes hysteria? Being told that you have to be sedated and intubated. Fearing that you will never wake up. You will never kiss your kids again. You will leave your husband alone to raise them. You will never get the chance to tell everyone important in your life how much you love them. That is panic and hysteria. That is feeling like the whole world is collapsing around you but know that it’s not. It is just your body shutting down organ by organ while the world still turns.
The next thing I read from two people is that I shouldn’t be so quick to dismiss the IUD removal as the cause. Fair enough. I wrote that I will never truly know which it was that made me sick. I consulted doctor google again and found stories of TSS from IUD implantation. I did not find any documented stories about it occurring from removal. I did hear of a story of a friend of a friend of a friend that did get sick from removal. All I’m saying is that according to my doctors it is not documented in medical literature yet. I am not saying that if you continue to use tampons that you will get sick. I am only asking if you want to risk the possibility. Smokers understand that when they light up they may get sick. If they choose to continue to smoke, that’s on them. I am not judging them. unfortunately many women do not understand that there is a true risk of TSS when you use tampons. That is documented and that is why there are warning labels that are just thrown away. If you do continue to use tampons I will pray, and pray, and pray some more that you will never get TSS. This is not about me being right. This is about information. And this is about me healing emotionally from the trauma I went through.
Now that I have that off my chest I’ll get back to the title of this post, the alternative. I am purposely using the singular here. I know there are many things you can choose to use but I think the most comfortable and environmentally friendly is the menstrual cup. One evening after I was discharged Marc sat me down and asked me what I was going to use in the future for my periods. You can mark that as one of the top conversations I never imagined having with my husband. I told him I did not know but that it would not be tampons. Several of my friends were cup users so I asked them their opinions and it was a 100% consensus that they loved them. When that first period came I broke out my newly ordered diva cup. It was so awkward. Like, seriously, I fold it and squat and do what with what?! You’ve got to be kidding me, right?! Then I figured it out and it was the most amazing thing ever. It was so comfortable that I literally could not feel it. I could leave it in for 12 hours?! Incredible! The removal? Awkward as hell…but you know what, that’s okay. When you’ve shit in a bed pan you can handle a little awkward. So there it is, my recommendation for an alternative to tampons. I found it to be more comfortable than a tampon ever had been. You will save money in the long run and it’s a hell of a lot better for Mother Earth. There are several brands you can use. I’m not endorsing the diva cup, that’s just the one I tried.
On a different note, I later found out that I am not allowed to use anything internal including cups. TSS changes your life forever.