First Menstruation

An Overview

Menstruation (a period) is a sign that a girl’s body is able to conceive a child. While one girl may be excited at the prospect of becoming a young woman, another may be fearful of her first period and its implication that her childhood is coming to an end. The first menstrual period also called menarche, begins at different times for young girls. While no one can precisely predict the exact timing of a first period, there are some biological signs that may indicate when it will likely occur. During the period itself, a girl may experience symptoms such as cramps or emotional reactions in addition to the obvious release of blood from her uterus. Some girls start to menstruate as young as age 10 while others don’t get their first period until they are 15. A few predictable signs will let you know that menstruation is on the horizon.

Shortly after the beginning of puberty in girls, and usually about 2 years after the development of breasts, menstruation starts. While menstruation usually begins between ages 12 and 13, it may happen at a younger or older age. The first menstrual period is called ”menarche .” Cramps are typically more intense during the first few days of the period. Some girls also notice mood changes before and during their menstrual cycle. Every girl’s development is different, and this is usually no cause for alarm. According to the Center for Young Women’s Health, it’s a good idea to seek a doctor’s evaluation if there’s no evidence of development by 13 years of age
Menstrual blood flows from the uterus through the small opening in the cervix and passes out of the body through the vagina.

Menstrual flow can last from two to seven days, with a varying amount of blood flow. Young adolescent girls discharge approximately 2 tablespoons of blood during menstrual periods, prompting pad changes three to six times each day.

What causes Menstruation?

  • When this hormone reaches the pituitary gland a small bean-shaped gland at the base of your brain it leads to the production of more hormones in the ovaries for females (estrogen) and the testicles for males (testosterone).
  • When your menstrual cycle begins, your estrogen levels increase. That causes the lining of your uterus to thicken.
  • The uterine lining thickens so it can support a fertilized egg and develop into a pregnancy.
  • If there isn’t a fertilized egg, your body will break the lining down and push it out of your uterus. This results in bleeding your menstrual period.

What are the signs and symptoms of menstruation?

  •  Besides the bleeding, other signs and symptoms of menstruation may include headache, acne, bloating feeling more tired than usual (fatigue).
  • When breast buds begin to develop, a girl has entered puberty. This is the stage at which a child’s body begins to change and develop into an adult’s.
  • Feeling extra emotional or irritable pains in the low abdomen, tiredness, mood changes, food cravings, breast soreness and diarrhea.
  • Other signs that a girl’s first period is approaching include breast buds up to two years prior to the first period and changes in the body such as underarm and pubic hair approximately six months prior to menstruation.
  • Pubic hair growth starts soon after the onset of the breast development and starts as soft and thin fibers before getting increasingly coarser.
  • Menstrual cramps are common during a girl’s first period and can include sharp and intense pains or dull aches.
  • Some girls also notice mood changes before and during their menstrual cycle.
  • Clear or white vaginal discharge.

Should I use tampons or pads?

Both tampons and pads can be used to soak up blood from a period. They should be changed at least every four to six hours. Pads are worn in underwear, and are often easiest for young girls to use. With tampons, you will need to explain to your daughter how to insert them correctly so they are not uncomfortable.

Understand Menstruation

  • Menstrual cycle is a bodily process that begins in puberty, when you reach sexual maturity. Each month, your body prepares you for possible pregnancy. The walls of your uterus thicken with extra blood and tissue and your ovaries release an egg.
  •  If you’re getting close to having your period, you may notice a thin, white discharge coming from your vagina. This usually happens around 6 months before your first period.
  •  Keep in mind all women have been in this predicament. You should not be embarrassed to reach out to female classmates. Be aware of which of your female friends have already had their period.

Ask Precautions for mothers

  • First periods can be surprising. You cannot predict precisely when your first period will happen. However, you can take steps to prepare yourself.
  • Make a period kit. Many girls fear they’ll get their first period at school or when they’re away from home. To help your daughter feel ready, buy a small zippered pouch and stock it with a couple of teen-size sanitary pads and a clean pair of underwear.
  • Tell her that if her underwear gets soiled, she can just wrap it in toilet paper and throw it away in the little trash can in the bathroom stall and use the clean pair in her kit.
  • Both tampons and pads can be used to soak up blood from a period. They should be changed at least every four to six hours. Pads are worn in underwear, and are often easiest for young girls to use.
    When to we consult the doctor.
  • Her periods come more often than every 21 days or are more than 45 days apart.
  • She has very heavy periods or cramps that nonprescription pain relievers don’t help.
  • Heavy pain in Abdominal.
  • If someone is passing quarter-size clots, that tells me that there could be something wrong [in] the uterus that needs further investigation.

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