Mother and Daughter Talk: Period, Cramps, and More!
In a previous post, I talked about getting the puberty conversation started with your daughter and the importance of talking to her about puberty. This month is all about the period talk!
Most girls will have their 1st period between 11 and 13 years old, but it can be as young as 9 to 16 years old. Before your daughter’s first period, she will show some signs that her period is coming.
First Period Signs
Breasts: She will start to develop her breasts about 2 years before she gets her first period and they can take up to 4 years to fully develop.
Pubic Hair: Soon after her breasts start developing, she will grow thin and soft pubic hair to eventually be coarser.
White or yellow discharge: Once she has a discharge, her period will start within the next few months. She can use a liner, like the Always Daily Liner, to help protect her underwear.
Once the signs are imminent that her periods are just a few months away, it’s time to be prepared and have some pads on hand and in her school bag. Her first period will most likely be light, so a teen pad, like the Always Radiant Infinity Teen Regular Pads with Wings, will be sufficient.
Mothers and daughters can definitely share things in common when it comes to periods. At our house, many times my daughter and I’s menstrual cycle coincide, but we don’t necessarily share the same menstrual symptoms like cramps, flow, etc. I certainly have cramps every month with a heavy flow while she doesn’t. When we do, I find that using a heating pad or magic bag that you can heat up in the microwave and apply it to the lower abdomen helps relieve the cramps as well as massaging that area with massage oil in circular motion. I also find that when I exercise, it increases the blood flow to the muscles and relieves tension that may cause cramps. Sometimes I get constipated during my period, so I drink lots of water and eat more fiber on these days. Constipation seems to cause cramps and more pain when I have my periods.
What causes menstrual cramps? (taken from Always)
Menstrual cramps are like cramps elsewhere in your body. A muscle contracts too hard or too fast, constricting the blood flow and producing pain. In this case, the muscles are in the uterus. Mild cramps could be the result of things other than your period. Good pain-free menstrual health is closely related to good health and a positive mental attitude. The simple health habits of good posture, exercise, adequate diet, regular elimination—all are important in preventing painful menstruation (dysmenorrhea).
My daughter also has irregular cycles while I am always at about 26-28 days. From what I can see, period symptoms are not inherited. Which comes to talk about what is a regular period? I think you just have to understand your own body’s patterns and rhythms to decide what is normal for you. When in doubt, don’t hesitate to talk to your family doctor or gynecologist.
Again, I would like to stress the importance of talking to your daughter about her 1st period before she has them to reassure her of the normal changes that are happening to her body and to share your experiences and knowledge with her. It’s a perfect special mother and daughter bonding time!
Are your menstrual symptoms the same as your daughter, mother or sister?
Although this post has been generously sponsored by Always, the opinions and language are all my own, and in no way do they reflect Always.
Though my girls know about menstruation at 7 and 9, they have no idea that disposable products can be used to manage it. We are proudly a household with very, very little disposable items. It is just not a part of our daily life. My girls have seen my variety of lovely, colourful, locally made cloth pads as well as my Diva cup. This is normal to them. Allowing girls to know that more options are out there is very important.
Mine were the very same as my mom’s, complete with long cycle, heavy flow, and really bad cramping!
Brenda A: Well said!
Staring at 9 with very painful cramping that kept for home at least 2 days a month and 15 years later still the same.Terrible pain,heavy flow and long cycle.She had been told it may differ after first childbirth.
I am sorry to hear about this Kathy!
I hope when she is ready to start a family this will be all behind her as only a memory