24 February 2011

Why do we get periods?

It's almost that time of the month. You feel puffier than a marshmallow and your forehead breaks out in zits.

It's almost that time of the month. You feel puffier than a marshmallow and your forehead breaks out in zits. Chocolate is the only thing that calms you down and prevents you from beating up that irritating guy behind you in maths.

Periods happen as a result of hormones released from a gland at the base of your brain called the pituitary gland. These hormones cause an egg to be released. At the same time, the lining of your uterus (or womb) is becoming thicker – like a soft and spongy bed, ready for the egg.

  • Some girls find it less intrusive to wear pads as they can be worn on the outside of your body
  • Wearing pads allows you to become familiar with the amount of menstrual flow you experience. This helps you know how often to change your pad.

  • You can swim
  • They don't develop a bad smell as easily as pads
  • No one can tell you are wearing a tampon. Sometimes the outline of a pad can be seen under tight clothes
  • Tampons can be carried around more easily – in a pocket or purse

  • Sponge it off with cold water on a cloth, tissue or toilet paper
  • If you have a jersey, tie it around your waist until you can change your clothes
  • Carry a spare pair of underwear in your bag
    • You lose about three tablespoons of blood during a period – although it seems like more!
    • If you eat very little or play very strenuous sports, you might stop or delay your periods
    • Being worried, stressed, sick or even going on holiday can cause your periods to be late
    • Your periods will continue until you are about 50. When they stop, you begin a stage in your life called menopause


Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

Lifestyle »

E-cigarettes: Here are five things to know

E-cigarettes have become hugely popular in the past decade, but a rash of vaping-linked deaths and illnesses in the US is feeding caution about a product that's already banned in some places.

Allergy »

Ditch the itch: Researchers find new drug to fight hives

A new drug works by targeting an immune system antibody called immunoglobulin E, which is responsible for the allergic reaction that causes hives.