The onset of menstruation is a major moment of puberty in girls. It can be very confusing with all the physical and emotional changes occurring in the body. Many girls don’t have a very good understanding of periods and get stressed about normal changes occurring in the body. 

Here is a list of few things that are normal with the commencement of menstruation:

  1. Acne: When your menstrual cycle begins, the body undergoes hormonal changes every month. It is normal to have breakouts before having your periods. It can be difficult to deal with them for many girls. A good cleansing regime may help. Eating less oily and processed food can help reduce them by keeping your hormones balanced.
  2. Vaginal dischargeOnce you start getting your periods, the amount of vaginal discharge will also increase to keep your vagina free from infections. It is normal to have a clear to white discharge but if you notice yellowish discharge, you may need to see your gynaecologist. You can change your undergarment 2-3 times a day if you feel uneasy.
  3. Mood swings: Fluctuating hormones also have an effect on our emotions. It is normal to feel anxious, sad, cranky or happy for no reason at all. Mood swings usually go away after your periods are over and do not affect your overall mental well-being.
  4. Cramps: Cramps in the abdomen, back, and groin area during periods are normal and can vary in intensity from mild to severe. Pain usually reduces by the 3rd day of your periods. A hot water bottle and rest may help or you can visit your gynaecologist who will prescribe you some medicines if the pain is unbearable.

In developed countries, periods are treated as a taboo subject and that reasons for most of the anxiety girls face when they get their first periods. This needs to change. If you are uncomfortable with discussing menstruation with your children, take them to a gynaecologist so that they can be guided well.