5 min read
by Team Thinx | 08/07/2023
If you've got a loved one experiencing the not-so-fun world of period cramps — we totally get it. It's tough to see someone you care about going through that. Don’t worry, we're here to lend a hand with some helpful tips and advice on how to be the ultimate support during this time. Let's dive in and explore ways to help make someone’s period just a little better.
Note: The term "daughter" is utilized throughout this guide to represent a shared experience. However, our goal is to help you navigate your child's first period, with respect to their gender identity.
Before we explain how to support someone during their period, especially when it’s your daughter’s first period, let's explore what menarche is all about. Menarche, also known as someone's first menstruation, is a significant milestone in their life. It marks the beginning of their menstrual journey, and it's something to approach with sensitivity and care. Understanding the emotional and physical changes that come with menarche is important to offer the best support possible. Knowing all these will help you better understand when and how to talk to your daughter about her period.
Knowing the signs your daughter is about to start her period can be a valuable tool in providing timely support. Physical changes like breast development, growth spurts, and the appearance of pubic hair might be early indicators. Emotionally, mood swings and increased sensitivity are common experiences during this time. Being attuned to these signs allows you to be there for your loved one when they need you the most.
Once you have identified the signs that a period may begin, preparing for the first period becomes important. As a parent, friend, partner, or caregiver, understanding and offering the right support can make a significant difference in their well-being and comfort. Here are some tips to help you get started on this journey of preparation and support:
Preparation is key when it comes to helping someone manage their first period effectively. As a parent, partner, or friend, you can play a role in making this experience as comfortable as possible. Let's explore three ways to help someone on their period to ensure they feel supported and confident during this significant milestone:
be prepared with the right period products: Make sure you have a variety of menstrual products readily available, including period underwear. Try Thinx Teens — period underwear specially designed for early and first periods, and made to fit teen bodies.
educate and normalize: Initiate open conversations about menstruation, making sure they feel comfortable discussing it with you. Normalize the experience and answer any questions they might have.
encourage self-care: Offer gentle reminders to practice self-care during their period. This might include resting, staying hydrated, and practicing relaxation techniques to reduce stress.
Once the period arrives, cramps can be challenging to deal with. However, there are various methods to help ease menstrual pain to help someone on their period. As someone offering support, you can suggest the following:
heat therapy: Applying a heating pad or a warm water bottle to the lower abdomen can provide much-needed relief from cramps.
gentle exercise: Can you work out on your period? Absolutely! Encourage light exercises like walking or yoga, which can ease discomfort and improve mood during this time.
food: Treat period symptoms with foods that are known to reduce inflammation and ease cramps such as whole grains, leafy greens, and even seafood.
Beyond physical discomfort, menstruation can also take a toll on one's mental and emotional well-being. Understanding and addressing the emotional aspect of someone's menstrual period is just as important as providing physical support. Here are some valuable ways to offer mental and emotional support during this time:
validate their feelings: When someone is going through their period, they may experience a rollercoaster of emotions due to hormonal fluctuations. Validate their feelings and let them know that it's entirely normal to feel a range of emotions during this time. Avoid dismissing their emotions and instead, lend a listening ear and offer empathetic responses to make them feel heard and supported.
be patient and understanding: Heavy periods can make even the strongest individuals feel vulnerable and irritable. Avoid taking their emotional reactions personally and recognize that these symptoms are a natural part of the menstrual cycle. Offering a safe and non-judgmental space can help them feel more at ease during this time.
create a comfortable environment: Make their surroundings as comfortable and relaxing as possible. Offer cozy blankets, soothing music, or their favorite movies to help distract them from any discomfort they might be experiencing.
offer affirmations and encouragement: Offer words of affirmation and encouragement to boost their confidence during their period. Simple statements like "You're doing great" or "I'm proud of you" can actually make a significant impact on their emotional well-being.
Remember, the mental and emotional aspects of menstruation are just as valid as the physical ones. By offering empathetic support and understanding, you can help someone navigate their period with greater ease and comfort. Your presence and caring attitude can make a significant difference in their overall well-being during this time.
As your loved one reaches this stage of life, let's celebrate their strength and resilience together, and make sure they know just how darn proud you are of the incredible person they're becoming.
Providing support during someone's period, especially when they experience painful cramps, can make a significant impact. Empathy, understanding, and preparation are key elements in helping them through this natural process. By offering empowering support, you can help them navigate this journey with confidence and ease.
So, stock up on chocolate, comfy blankets, and all the good vibes — with your support, they’ve got this!
At Thinx, we strive to provide our readers with the most up-to-date, objective, and research-based information. Our content is crafted by experienced contributors who ground their work in research and data. Articles contain trusted third-party sources that are either directly linked within the text or listed at the bottom to lead readers to the original source.
Medical News Today. First Period: Everything You Need to Know. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/first-period
UNICEF. How to Support Your Daughter on Her First Period. https://www.unicef.org/rosa/stories/how-support-your-daughter-her-first-period
Mind. Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD): Information for Friends and Family. https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/premenstrual-dysphoric-disorder-pmdd/for-friends-and-family/
by Team Thinx