These Mediterranean Fine Silk Sponges are an organic, reusable alternative to disposable tampons. Sponges are worn internally and absorb menstrual flow.
Each pack includes two unbleached fine silk sea sponges (suitable for a medium flow), a cotton storage pouch and an instruction leaflet. Each sponge measures 6-7cm in diameter and can be trimmed to size.
Sponges area renewable resource. These sponges are sustainably harvested in Greece where they are hand-cut by divers who leave the base intact, allowing it to regrow again.
Important: These are natural sea sponges, therefore they vary in shape, size, colour and surface texture. You should inspect your sponges for debris prior to use. There are instructions on how to do this included with the sponges.
BEFORE USING A PERIOD SPONGE
Sponges may be a suitable alternative for people who have had difficulty using a tampon or menstrual cup due to anatomical differences such as a tilted uterus, sensitive bladder or low cervix. Before opting for a sponge there are a few things to consider;
- Removing a sponge will be more 'hands-on' and messier than removing a tampon or menstrual cup.
You will need access to a sink with clean running water to clean your sponge. For this reason, sponge use is often reserved for use when at home rather than when out and about. If possible, change your sponge in the shower where it is easier to clean up.
- Sudden abdominal pressure caused by sneezing, coughing or lifting heavy weights may cause the sponge to leak if it is nearing capacity.
- As sponges should be changed every 4-6 hours, they are generally not suitable for sleeping overnight but can be worn if sleeping for a shorter period of time.
- Sponges should be replaced every 3-6 months so they do not last as long as some other reusable alternatives however they are biodegradable.
- Sponges are aquatic invertebrates. Whilst they do not have a digestive system, brain or nervous system (and cannot feel pain), this may be a consideration if you are vegan.
CARING FOR YOUR PERIOD SPONGE
Before and after your period: Your sponge is not supplied sterile. This is a natural sea sponge and you should inspect it for debris prior to use. It's important to sanitise your sponge before using for the first time and again after each menstrual cycle.
- Bring a pot of water to the boil.
- Add 1 tablespoon of bi-carb soda.
- Add the sponges.
- Gently boil for 2 minutes. We recommend setting a timer.
- Remove the sponges with tongs.
- Allow to air dry on a clean surface.
Do not boil your sponges for longer than recommended timeframe as this may cause the sponges to harden or shrink and shorten the lifespan of your sponges.
During your period: thoroughly wash your sponge with a pH-balanced, fragrance-free soap. Allow your sponge to air dry completely before reusing or storing. You should store your sponges in the cloth pouch provided - never store in an airtight container or plastic bag.
Important: Do not use harsh chemicals, essential oils or vinegar on your sponges. These may degrade sponge fibres or leave a residue on the sponge which may cause skin irritation and upset the natural vaginal flora.
WARNINGS & PRECAUTIONS
- Seek advice from a medical professional before using a sponge if you have any medical concerns, gynaecological conditions, have an intrauterine device (IUD), have recently given birth, have had surgery in the pelvic area, or if you have ever experienced Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS).
Do not wear a sponge for post-partum bleeding.
Sponges can be worn during sex however wearing a sponge during intercourse may cause it to move higher into the vaginal canal and make removal more difficult.
- Sponges will not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or pregnancy.
Practice good hand hygiene when using a sponge and follow the cleaning instructions.
Only use as directed and never exceed the 6 hour maximum wear time.
- Seek medical assistance if you are unable to remove your sponge.
- IMPORTANT: The use of internal menstrual products such as tampons, menstrual cups and sponges may increase the risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS). TSS is a rare but serious disease that may cause death. If you feel unwell with fever, vomiting, diarrhoea, headache, fainting or skin rash, remove your sponge and go to the hospital emergency department immediately.
Curious about period sponges? Read more in this article!