Your body may be going through a lot of changes, and we bet
you have a ton of questions — especially about your period. Knowing more about your
changing body will help you stay calm as you continue growing in your puberty. Here
are six common questions and helpful answers about periods.
1. What is a period and why do we have them?
Simply put: A period is when a woman’s body releases tissue it no longer
needs. This tissue comes from the uterus, which is where a baby (fetus) can develop
in the female body. Every month or so, the uterus lining gets thicker to prepare
for a fertilized egg if the woman becomes pregnant. If the egg doesn’t get fertilized,
that lining is released from the body as blood through the vagina. This monthly
process is called menstruation or a period.
So when a girl has her period, her body is just getting rid
of a small amount of blood and some unneeded tissue. It is a natural, normal body
process for all females as they become women and mature physically.
2. What does a period feel like?
The actual flow of your period doesn’t feel like much when it’s happening. Chances
are, you won’t even feel it coming out. When you actually start your period,
you may feel some dampness in your private area — this may be caused by a few spots
of blood on your underwear.
3. Does having your period smell?
It shouldn’t! Menstrual odor happens when menstrual fluid comes in contact with
air. When menstrual fluid is absorbed within the vagina, like through a tampon,
it is not exposed to the air, so there shouldn’t be an odor. If you’re feeling worried,
just be sure to change your pads and tampons frequently to help keep odor at bay.
4. Does having your period hurt?
Menstruation itself doesn’t hurt, but some girls and women get cramps or other
symptoms during their periods that may be uncomfortable. This is typically due to
the hormones your body releases during menstruation that cause the uterus to contract
so it can shed it’s lining.
5. Do other people, like boys or my mom, know when
If you use period protection and are careful about personal cleanliness, people
won’t know you are menstruating unless you tell them.
6. Do boys menstruate?
Menstruation is a part of the female reproductive function. Boys have a different
reproductive system than women, so they don’t get periods. But boys go through physical
changes at puberty including voice changes, the beginnings of facial, underarm and
pubic hair and the ability to produce sperm.
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Wondering what is a period? You are not alone! Read helpful information, tips and advice at BeingGirl.com.