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First Period Guide

Let's Get Real About Periods

Millions of young menstruators get their periods everyday.

We've made a really simple guide for you to use to know what to expect when your period arrives and when puberty progresses.

Whether you have yet to have your first period, or you're already started, you're already on your way.

What is a period?

Reaching puberty means you are growing up. It is a special time in your life and should be celebrated. It means that your body is functioning normally and one day, you will be able to have babies.

Your uterus is the place where babies grow. A period happens because of hormone changes.Ovaries release the female hormones estrogen and progesterone. These hormones cause the lining of the uterus (or womb) to build up in order to get ready for a fertilised egg to attach and start developing. If there is no fertilised egg, the lining breaks down and bleeds - this is your period.

A period typically happens every month for 3-7 days and is the process by which the uterus sheds its lining. This results in bloody fluid making its way from your uterus and trickles out of your vagina.

When your period first begins, it is normal for it to take a bit of time before it starts to follow a regular monthly cycle.

This cycle is called the Menstrual Cycle.

When will I get my first period and what should I expect?

  • Most people will experience their first period between age 12 and 13, however for some people it can start earlier or later.

  • Your first period will usually occur towards the end of puberty, about 1.5 - 3 years after you notice that your breasts are growing.

  • Another sign that your period is on its way, is vaginal discharge (sort of like mucus) on underwear. This discharge usually begins about 6 months to a year before a girl gets her first period.

  • First periods often appear as a darker smear of blood on your underwear.

  • Your period will normally last between 3 - 7 days each month.

  • First periods usually don't hurt. As your period begins to become more regular, you might notice a cramping feeling. This is normal and there are lots of way to ease the pain!

1 Year Worth of YourCycle Tampons

Made with 100% soft organic cotton, nothing else. They're completely free from fragrance and plastic.

They biodegrade in under 12 months (compared to most tampons which take up to 1000 years to break down).

Signs that your first period might be approaching

1. Hair growth in your public area and under your arms.

2. White vaginal discharge (you might noticed white/milky liquid coming out of your vagina and on your underwear).

3. Feeling discomfort and cramping in your lower back and abdominal area. These are called menstrual cramps and they happen when hormones are released from your uterus before and during your period.

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4. Emotional changes ranging from sadness to irritability.

Period Q&A's!

During your period, you will lose between 2 and 8 tablespoons of blood. Don't worry, this is normal and nothing to be concerned about.

When your period gets started, it can take a while to become regular. You should speak to an adult or a doctor if your period comes more than every 3 weeks, or if you haven't had your period in 3 months. As you get older, it will become more important to be aware of the regularity of your period.

Yes, urine comes out from the urethra while tampons are inserted into the vagina. These are two separate parts of the body which means that they don't impact each other.

No you won't :)

Absolutely! Exercising regularly is part of a healthy lifestyle and studies have shown that exercise can relieve period pain.

Yes you can, as long as your are wearing the appropriate menstrual products, such as a tampon or period swimwear. Your tampon won't fall out or leak while you are swimming as long as it is inserted correctly. Period swimwear is also available and absorb the blood from your flow while you are in the water.

This depends on how heavy you bleed and your comfort levels. Different period products provide an indication of how often you should change. Use these suggestions as your guide. Most menstruators will need to change their pad, tampon, or menstrual cup about 3‒6 times a day.

Provide the answer to the question here.

For most people who menstruate,their period will last for many years. Your period will naturally stop when you reach menopause (around age 45‒55) or while you are pregnant.

You have many choices for how to deal with period blood. You may need to experiment a bit to find which works best for you. Some menstruators use only one method and others switch between different methods.

  • Most girls use pads when they first get their period and then when they feel comfortable, they start experimenting with other period products such as tampons.
  • Many girls find tampons more convenient than pads, especially when playing sports or swimming.
  • Some girls prefer a menstrual cup. Most menstrual cups are made of silicone. To use a menstrual cup, a girl inserts it into her vagina. Blood then drips into the cup until it is removed and emptied into a toilet.
  • There are also other options to use during your period. Period panties have become popular as have reusable pads. These are great options because they can be washed and reused and are good for the environment.

What does it mean?

Here are some common words to understand

Menstruation: This means "having your period". This is the part of the menstrual cycle where the wall of your uterus sheds and it leads to you bleeding for between3-7 days every month.

Menstrual Cycle: The regular cycle of changes that your body goes through that is regulated by hormones and results in your period.

Puberty: The process a child's body goes through as they begin to develop and approach adulthood. Puberty includes growing pubic hair, developing breasts, growing taller and starting your period.

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS): Symptoms such as bloating, mood changes and headaches that some people experience leading up to and during their period.

Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS): A serious illness that can be caused by a specific bacteria if you leave tampons and cups in for longer than recommended. Don't worry, this is extremely rare and preventable if you are careful about changing tampons and cups at least once every 6-8 hours.

Pads & Liners

Pads and liners are period products that have been made to stick to youryour underwear to collect period blood. or vaginal discharge fluid. There are a range of different types of pads, including reusable and disposable options.


Tampons are cotton plugs that are inserted into the vagina to absorb period blood. Don't leave a tampon in for more than 8 hours at a time because this can increase your risk of a serious infection called toxic shock syndrome.

Period underwear

A type of reusable period product that looks like normal underwear however collects blood throughout the day. Period underwear can be washed and reused again.

Menstrual Cup

A silicon cup that is inserted into the vagina to collect period blood. The cup can be removed and emptied into the toilet, and then cleaned to be reused again.

About YourCycle

YourCycle is an organisation founded by a Kiwi entrepreneur Sharndre Kushor. Our goal is to make your life better with the highest quality, no frills, menstrual products.

We simplify your life by delivering pads and tampons to you before you need them and without you having to think about it.