| Tara Langdale
One question we get asked a lot here at Vuvatech is whether it is OK to use dilators during your period. The simple answer is, yes! You absolutely can. In fact, we feel that your period is actually a good time to use dilators. This is mainly because of the increased blood flow to the vagina, which often makes it easier to progress to a larger dilator size without discomfort. Many women say that when their flow is heavier at the start, their vaginas seem wider, so they experience less pain when dilating.
On top of this (although we know it may not sound hugely appealing!) the menstrual blood provides lubrication, so you won’t need to use as much lube. We know you may have a few more questions regarding dilating during your menstrual cycle, so we will cover as many aspects of dilating on your period as possible in this article:
When to use dilators during your period
Although many women actually find it easier to dilate at the start of their period, others may find that they are more sensitive at this time, or are put off by a heavy flow. You don’t have to use dilators during the heaviest flow if you don’t want to; don’t worry even if you’re on a dilating protocol, a couple of days off shouldn’t make any difference to your progress.
Some women prefer not to use the vaginal dilator for the first two or three days, but will resume dilating when their flow lessens. If you do find that your vagina feels a little tighter after missing a few days, you can use a smaller vaginal dilator and work your way back up.
You may wish to try sleeping with a dilator inserted, as many women do. If so, to minimize mess from any leaks, it could be an idea to put a towel down or use a sanitary pad if possible.
Use dilators during your period for easier tampon insertion
When you use dilators during your period you may actually find that this makes it easier to transition to using tampons – perhaps immediately afterwards. Many women with vaginismus or vulvodynia are unable to use tampons easily, but successfully using a vaginal dilator while you’re menstruating can really help you to release apprehension around tampon use.
Don’t cancel your pelvic floor physical therapy appointment
If you have an appointment for pelvic floor physical therapy, there is no need to cancel your appointment just because you’re on your period. Your therapist may actually be able to better progress your tolerance during this time, for the reasons we mentioned above. Most pelvic floor work shouldn’t be affected by your period flow, and your therapist will be accustomed to this!
Hygiene practices for dilator use
It’s easy to maintain hygiene when you use dilators during your period. Firstly, our range of vaginal dilators is non-porous, so none of the dilators will retain any blood or bacteria. You simply need to wash them properly with warm, soapy water after use.
While actually using your dilator, you could do it in the bathtub (no water necessary) or on a towel. It shouldn’t be a problem – we all know well that periods can be a little messy, but any mess is easy to contain and cleaning your dilators is standard protocol.
Well, hopefully it’s now clear that it’s absolutely fine to use dilators during your period. If you have any questions about dilator use or anything else sexual health related, feel free to take a look around our informative blog or give us a shout!