Getting a first period can be an exciting milestone in a young girl’s life. But what if it happens when she’s out and about, away from you? This is often a concern for girls and their mums. Here’s a foolproof guide to preparing your daughter.
Preparing for her first period
Mums and daughters may be worried about the first period arriving while at school or at a friend’s house, so it’s a good idea to prepare for this. First and foremost, having a frank talk about menstruation is very important. Arming your daughter with knowledge is vital in making her feel confident and assured. If she knows what to expect and what’s happening to her body, she’s less likely to feel scared or panic.
After a general discussion, you can move on to preparing your daughter in case her period starts while she’s out of the house. The best way to start is to talk about what will happen when the period begins, for example, that she’ll discover some blood on her underpants or when she wipes. Tell your daughter about the types of sanitary products available and discuss what she might like to use at first. A lot of young girls start off with pads as they are simple to use. Remind her that it’s important to wash her hands before and after.
Packing a kit
So your daughter is not caught short, pack a kit to keep in her school or sports bag. Getting your daughter to help you prepare a kit can be a good way to help explain what different sanitary products are for. Choose a small toiletries or cosmetic bag that is easy to store in her bag. Then you can fill it with:
- Underwear liner
- Tampons, if you wish
- Some paracetamol or other pain relief, in case she has some cramps
- A change of underwear
- A small plastic bag for soiled underwear
She may also want to keep a spare change of clothes in case they get stained, but it’s unlikely that the flow will be that heavy at first. Remind your daughter that if she does start her period at school and for some reason she’s not prepared and doesn’t have her kit with her that the teachers are there to help. Schools will have some supplies and be prepared for this, so there’s no need to be embarrassed.
- This article was written by Corinne Draper for Kidspot New Zealand. Sources include Child and Youth Health and Healthinsite.