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My Period

Menstruation & Your Cycle

Where Am I? Four Stages in Your Menstrual Cycle.

The following is a break down of the four phases of a menstrual cycle.


Phase OneMenstruation"Having Your Period"

  • What’s happening: Your body is getting rid of tissue it doesn’t need. 
  • More information: When you menstruate, the lining of the uterus, (the endometrium), breaks up and passes slowly from the uterus through the vagina to the outside of your body. This menstrual "flow" drips out slowly. It can look like a lot of blood, but it’s actually a mixture of blood, mucus, and body cells, amounting to a total of about 6-9 tablespoons, on average, for each period—with only about three of those tablespoons being blood. The flow might be red or quite dark, and might include some clumps or clots.


Phase TwoPre-Ovulation Phase (right after your period ends)

  • What’s happening: Your body is preparing an egg for pregnancy. 
  • More information: About the time your flow stops, your ovaries start to prepare another egg, or ovum, for release into one of the fallopian tubes (usually, the ovaries take turns releasing eggs—the left ovary one month, the right ovary the next month). At the same time, a hormone called estrogen tells your uterus to build up the endometrium.


Phase ThreeOvulation

  • What’s happening: A lot happens in this phase, but basically the egg is released from the ovary into the fallopian tubes, and your body is preparing the uterus to receive a fertilized egg (if there is one). 
  • More information: As Phase Two ends, your brain sends a new hormonal signal to your ovaries, telling one ovary to release the mature egg (ovum). This step is called ovulation. First, the egg moves through the fallopian tube toward the uterus. At the same time, the endometrium is growing even thicker because of the hormone progesterone. This happens so the body is ready in case the egg is fertilized. If the egg isn’t fertilized, your body knows that it doesn’t need its "nest" any longer.


Although phases of the menstrual cycle can vary in length, the number of days between ovulation and the menstrual period is consistent—ovulation usually occurs 14 days before the start of your next period.


Phase FourThe Premenstrual (Luteal) Phase

  • What’s happening: if a woman has not become pregnant, the uterus gets ready to release the unneeded tissue that was prepared for the egg. 
  • More information: Levels of two hormones involved in the development of the uterine lining, estrogen and progesterone, begin to drop. The stimulation for the endometrium is lost. This causes the shedding of the lining to begin, and a new menstrual cycle starts.


Use the period predictor to learn more about your individual cycle:

Answer         easy questions3
To find out period days - all year long!
Remember, dates are approximate. Your menstrual cycle will shift here and there. Come back and update your days if you want to keep it super accurate!
What day did your last period start?
How many days between the first day of your last period and the first day of your next?

(This is your cycle!)

How long is your menstrual cycle?    
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How long do your periods last?
How long do your periods last?    
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comments so far
Posted August 25, 2014
Another known fact about your period is that it does NOT flow in the water so you can go swimming anytime you want;)
Posted August 06, 2014
great advice didnt know this much info thank you
Posted September 20, 2012
i started mine yesterday !!
Posted January 01, 2014
i didnt get mine yet but i cant wait ive been reading about it in books trying to get all the information i can so when i do get it i will be prepared
Posted October 18, 2012
Im glad this is here
Posted May 02, 2014
Hey I have heard about people getting there periods right when they have dishcharge but I have and mine for over a year and I get cramps and mood swings but I dog. Have my period yet, I even have hair in the two places I suck :(
Posted July 25, 2012
@JulieLopez I got mine when I was 11 to! My step sister is lucky her mom got it when she was 13 or 14 and she doesn't even have pubic hair yet! (Don't worry she told me that's how I know! That would be gross if I really saw it. Well to me it would be gross...) I mean I know the whole mom thing is only a "guesstimate" but still. She doesn't have pit hair either! :( I'm so jealous!
Posted July 23, 2012
last year i couldnt wait for my period then when i got it in april of this year i wish i hadnt its so much trouble
Posted July 21, 2012
I just got my first period today! I was eating breakfast and felt a gush between my legs, and thought I peed myself! I went upstairs to my bathroom, and my WHITE underwear, were completely covered in blood, it looked like a war happened in my underwear! I've been extra hungry all day.. this sucks.
Posted July 21, 2012
I like the period predictor
The period diaries
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