What Is Considered The First Day Of Your Period

What If My Period Doesnt Come Or If It Starts When I Am Very Young

First Period – Girl Talk Episode 1

If you have not had a first period by the age of 15, or its been more than two to three years since your breasts started developing and you have not had a period, its best to talk to your doctor. If you get your period very young, at nine or ten it is usually just simply that you developed early. However, its a good idea to see your doctor to rule out other underlying medical conditions.

Your Cycle Made Simple

Understand the phases of your cycle can help you manage symptoms, schedule plans according to your phase, or know when to have sex if you’re trying for a baby. Cycles helps to visualize each phase of your cycle so you always know what to expect. Here’s how you can feel in tune with your body and get started with tracking today.

Possible Causes Of Spotting Before Periods

Spotting has a number of possible causes. Here are some of the most common:

Most causes of spotting are nothing to worry about and require no medical intervention. In rare cases, spotting could be the result of a more serious underlying condition that needs attention and/or treatment.

If youre concerned about any of the conditions above or youre worried about spotting for any other reason, dont hesitate to make an appointment with your health care provider.

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What Will My First Period Feel Like

You may find your first period comes and goes with very little in the way of symptoms, or you may find you experience quite a bit of discomfort. Common symptoms include:

  • Cramping in the lower abdomen
  • Breast tenderness
  • Diarrhea or nausea
  • Dizziness

Most of these symptoms do not last long, and can be treated with ibuprofen or other over-the-counter pain relief medications. A heating pad or hot water bottle on the abdomen or lower back can help ease pain in these areas. More details on menstrual pain and other symptoms can be found here .

How Do I Use A Tampon

How the Menstrual Cycle Works

Inserting a tampon for the first time can be a bit of a challenge. Its hard to know exactly how to position your body and at what angle to put the tampon in. After a few tries, you will figure out what works best for you. Its best to use slender size tampons when you are learning. If you arent exactly sure where your vaginal opening is, use a mirror to have a look at your vulva .

To insert a tampon that has an applicator:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Unwrap the tampon from its packaging and sit or stand in a comfortable position. Some women prefer to stand up and put one leg up on the toilet or tub, some prefer to remain sitting, or squat down.
  • Hold the tampon with your thumb and middle finger at the top of the outer tube. Insert the tampon into the vaginal opening, aiming it at your lower back. Once the outer tube is inside your vagina, push the inner tube of the applicator with your index finger.
  • Remove the applicator from your vagina and make sure the string of the tampon is hanging outside of your vaginal opening.
  • Wash your hands.
  • Once you are ready to remove the tampon, pull the string downward.
  • Tampons should be disposed of in the garbage, and not flushed down the toilet.
  • To insert a tampon without an applicator:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Unwrap the tampon from its packaging and sit or stand in a comfortable position. Some women prefer to stand up and put one leg up on the toilet or tub, others prefer to remain sitting, or squat down.
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    When Should We Be Having Sex

    Sex should be a fun and intimate activity, however many couples trying to conceive find that it can become a chore.

    To reduce the stress associated with getting the timing right try to focus less on the day of suspected ovulation and instead make sure you are having regular sex about every two days in the week around ovulation . For example, a woman with a 28 day cycle is best to have regular sex between day 11 and 17 of her cycle.

    Comprehensive Explanation Of The Menstrual Cycle:

    The menstrual cycle has three phases:

    1. Follicular Phase

    This phase of the menstrual cycle occurs from approximately day 1-14. Day 1 is the first day of bright red bleeding, and the end of this phase is marked by ovulation. While menstrual bleeding does happen in the early part of this phase, the ovaries are simultaneously preparing to ovulate again. The pituitary gland releases a hormone called FSH follicle stimulating hormone. This hormone causes several follicles to rise on the surface of the ovary. These fluid filled bumps each contain an egg. Eventually, one of these follicle becomes dominant and within it develops a single mature egg the other follicles shrink back. If more than one follicle reaches maturity, this can lead to twins or more. The maturing follicle produces the hormone estrogen, which increases over the follicular phase and peaks in the day or two prior to ovulation. The lining of the uterus becomes thicker and more enriched with blood in the second part of this phase , in response to increasing levels of estrogen. High levels of estrogen stimulate the production of gonadotropin-releasing hormone , which in turn stimulates the pituitary gland to secrete luteinizing hormone . On about day 12, surges in LH and FSH cause the egg to be released from the follicle. The surge in LH also causes a brief surge in testosterone, which increases sex drive, right at the most fertile time of the cycle.

    2. Ovulatory Phase

    3. Luteal Phase

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    How Can I Keep Track Of My Menstrual Cycle

    You can keep track of your menstrual cycle by marking the day you start your period on a calendar. After a few months, you can begin to see if your periods are regular or if your cycles are different each month.

    You may want to track:

    • Premenstrual syndrome symptoms: Did you have cramping, headaches, moodiness, forgetfulness, bloating, or breast tenderness?
    • When your bleeding begins: Was it earlier or later than expected?
    • How heavy the bleeding was on your heaviest days: Was the bleeding heavier or lighter than usual? How many pads or tampons did you use?
    • Period symptoms: Did you have pain or bleeding on any days that caused you to miss work or school?
    • How many days your period lasted: Was your period shorter or longer than the month before?

    You can also download apps for your phone to track your periods. Some include features to track your PMS symptoms, energy and activity levels, and more.

    What Happens During The Menstrual Cycle

    Your Menstrual Cycle & Periods in 3 Minutes

    To understand the menstrual cycle, it helps to know about the reproductive organs inside a woman’s body. These are:

    • 2 ovaries where eggs are stored, developed and released
    • the womb where a fertilised egg implants and a baby develops
    • the fallopian tubes two thin tubes that connect the ovaries to the womb
    • the cervix the entrance to the womb from the vagina
    • the vagina

    The menstrual cycle is controlled by hormones. In each cycle, rising levels of the hormone oestrogen cause the ovary to develop and release an egg . The womb lining also starts to thicken.

    In the second half of the cycle, the hormone progesterone helps the womb to prepare for implantation of a developing embryo.

    The egg travels down the fallopian tubes. If pregnancy doesn’t occur, the egg is reabsorbed into the body. Levels of oestrogen and progesterone fall, and the womb lining comes away and leaves the body as a period .

    The time from the release of an egg to the start of a period is around 10 to 16 days.

    Watch an animation about how the menstrual cycle works.

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    Is A Cycle Always 28 Days

    The average cycle is 28 days but, for some women, it is as short as 21 days, for others it is as long as 35 days. When you first start having periods, it can also take a while before your periods develop a regular pattern. Your cycle also changes as you get older.

    Your menstruation cycle stops temporarily when you are pregnant. Breastfeeding also affects your cycle. At the end of menopause, your cycle stops permanently.

    What If My Menstrual Cycle Is Way Different Than Average

    There are lots of potential reasons for having an irregular period, and most of them are no big deal. Check out this article to find outâ¯more. If youâre worried, you can always tell a trusted adult or your doctor to help get to the bottom of why your period is irregular and what you can do about it.

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    When Are You Most Fertile

    “Theoretically, there’s only a short time when women can get pregnant, and that is the time around ovulation,” says Belfield.

    It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly when ovulation happens but in most women, it happens around 10 to 16 days before the next period.

    “It’s not accurate to say that all women are fertile on day 14 of the menstrual cycle,” says Belfield. This might be true for women who have a regular, 28-day cycle, but it won’t apply to women whose cycles are shorter or longer.

    For more information on fertility awareness, see the FPA guide to natural family planning.

    So When Is Day 1 Of Your Menstrual Cycle

    Is My Period Normal? Use This Chart to Find Out  SheKnows

    If youre having trouble figuring out whether the light bleeding or spotting youre experiencing means its your Day 1, theres a general rule of thumb for natural cycles that can help make it clear:

    If you have spotting or light bleeding one day and this bleeding occurs again the next day, the previous day was your Day 1. Thats because it means that estrogen dropped low enough the day before to trigger the shedding of your uterine lining so you have continous bleeding. Its just taking awhile to get a heavier flow.

    If you have spotting or light bleeding one day, then no bleeding at all the next day, it was likely breakthrough bleeding, which can occur in some women leading up to their period. This means it was not your Day 1. You would wait until heavier bleeding or continuous bleeding begins to count that as your Day 1.

    The above rule of thumb applies to natural cycles only since hormone birth control can cause spotting and bleeding between periods.

    If you have a natural cycle, you may also experience spotting or light bleeding at ovulation in the middle of your cycle. This is a result of the egg breaking away from the ovarian follicle and has nothing to do with your period.

    If you have a health issue that impacts your hormones or menstrual cycle, you may experience different menstrual bleeding patterns. So, talk with your gynecologist about your specific flow.

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    What Is The Menstrual Cycle

    The menstrual cycle is a series of phases that you body undergoes each month. While the average menstrual cycle is around 28 days long, it’s common for cycles to range from 21-40 days in length.

    Your cycle can be broken down into a few main phases and each phase has a purpose, accompanied by certain observations and symptoms.

    1. The Menstrual Phase

    The first day that you experience bleeding is counted as the first day of a new menstrual cycle. Menstruation typically lasts 2 to 7 days, and can be accompanied by symptoms such as cramps, fatigue and sore breasts. Learn more about period pain here.

    The first day of the menstrual phase also marks day one of the follicular phase . Throughout the follicular phase, your ovaries begin to prepare an egg to be released for ovulation.

    2. Follicular Phase

    From the start of your period until ovulation, you’re in the follicular phase. This phase is when the uterine lining thickens in preparation for a fertilized egg to be implanted, leading to pregnancy. During this phase, the ovaries ready the egg to be released into the uterus on day 14 by increasing reproductive hormone production.

    3. Ovulation

    Ovulation occurs when an egg is released from the ovary into the fallopian tube and commonly occurs around the middle of your cycle. If you have a 28 day cycle, this means around day 14. Signs of ovulation can include a higher sex drive or a pain in one side of the lower abdomen known as ‘mittelschmerz’.

    4. Luteal Phase

    When Should I See A Doctor For Heavy Periods

    Many women have come to accept heavy bleeding as a normal part of their cycle. This helps explain why over half of women with menorrhagia dont know they have it, or know that heavy periods are treatable. If left untreated, heavy periods can cause other health concerns like anemia, a red blood cell condition that makes it difficult for your organs to get the oxygen they need.

    If your period affects your daily life by causing you to miss work or school, cancel social activities or plan your day around bathroom breaks, you might have menorrhagia. Heavy bleeding can cause other physical symptoms that can make you dread getting your period like extreme fatigue, very painful cramps, lightheadedness, anxiety and depression.

    We recommend making an appointment with one of our womens health doctors if you experience any of the above symptoms. A doctor will be able to diagnose whats causing your heavy periods and recommend treatment options. If youre not sure whether your period is normal, just ask!

    Our womens health doctors at HealthPartners and Park Nicollet are here to answer your questions. Well help you put an end to planning your life around heavy periods.

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    How Will My Menstrual Cycle Change Throughout My Life

    From your first period…

    The average age of getting your first period is just over 12 years, but this usually ranges from 9-15 years. It takes a while for your body to adjust and get the balance of all the hormones right, but after about a year, your periods should be regular, says Dr Rosén.

    Through potential pregnancy and later life…

    With the exception of pregnancies and breastfeeding, and occasional skipped periods if youre very stressed, your periods should continue regularly until youre in your mid-40s.

    As we get older, the quality of our eggs declines, which is why the risk of miscarriage and chromosomal abnormalities increases. The corpus luteum also becomes less effective at producing progesterone, so your menstrual cycle might become shorter, says Dr Rosén. This is usually the very first sign of perimenopause.

    Ending with perimenopause and menopause…

    After a while, you start to run out of eggs, and you wont have your cycle every month. Despite not ovulating, your ovaries will still produce oestrogen, causing your uterus lining to grow. But as youre not ovulating, youre not producing progesterone and so eventually the lining becomes so heavy it just falls out.

    Thats why you can get very irregular but heavy, long-lasting bleeds until around the age of 51. After this time, if you havent had a period in a year, then youre officially in menopause.

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