As young girls grow up, their bodies go through many changes. One of the most significant changes is the onset of menstruation or the monthly period. It can be a confusing and scary time, but with the right information and preparation, it doesn't have to be. In this article, we will talk about what to expect for your first period and how to prepare for it.
What is menstruation?
Menstruation is the body's way of preparing for a potential pregnancy. Each month, the uterus grows a lining of blood and tissue to nourish a fertilized egg. If the egg is not fertilized, the lining sheds through the vagina in the form of blood and tissue. This is what we call a period.
What to expect on your first period?
Your first period, also known as menarche, may be different from what you expect. Some girls experience cramping, bloating, and breast tenderness before their period starts. Others may have no symptoms at all. When your period does arrive, you may notice a few drops of blood in your underwear or when you wipe after using the bathroom. It may be light or heavy, and it may last for a few days to a week.
How to prepare for your first period?
It's a good idea to be prepared for your first period so you can feel comfortable and confident when it arrives. Here are some things you can do to prepare:
Talk to someone you trust - A parent, caregiver, teacher, or healthcare provider can provide you with information and support.
Keep supplies handy - You'll need pads or tampons to manage your period. Experiment with different products to see what works best for you. It's also a good idea to keep a spare set of clothes and some wipes in your bag or locker.
Track your cycle - Use a calendar or an app to keep track of when your period is expected. This can help you anticipate when it will arrive and prepare accordingly.
Practice good hygiene - Change your pad or tampon every few hours and wash your hands before and after using the bathroom. Shower regularly to keep clean and fresh.
Your first period can be a scary and uncertain time, but it doesn't have to be. By understanding what to expect and how to prepare, you can feel confident and comfortable. Remember, menstruation is a natural and normal part of growing up, and there's nothing to be ashamed of. To learn more about getting prepared for menstruation and similar topics make sure to message askNivi on WhatsApp.
To learn more about pregnancy, reproduction, and other sexual health topics like sexually transmitted infections (STIs), cervical cancer, and how to prevent or delay pregnancy, make sure to message askNivi on WhatsApp. askNivi is a free, confidential health chat service that can direct you to essential healthcare products and services in your area. Start chatting today!