The delight we feel when we experience our first period as young girls can quickly change to dread and frustration when we realise the reality of what each month will bring us. While a period is a sign of healthy bodily functions in women, they are often messy and can be difficult to endure at the best of times. Here are 15 easily integrated ways to help you embrace your period.
1. Talk Openly With Your Friends!
This seems obvious but many young girls and even some young women struggle to talk candidly about their period. We are taught from a young age to keep our period private and this can often leave us feeling alone in our mess and the pain that comes with it. One way to embrace your period is to tell your friends when you aren’t feeling well, ask them what helps them and just create a safe space to be women together. You will be surprised by how much better you will feel just by talking about your period with someone you trust.
2. Eat Fruits And Vegetables
While this doesn’t seem like much fun at all, eating well while on your period is one way to help you embrace your period. Fresh fruits and vegetables can help your flow, especially for those girls and women who experience heavy periods. Try to have some vegetables with your dinner and snack on some fruit during the day and experiment – this could really make a difference for you!
3. Drink Plenty Of Water
It is important while we are menstruating that we stay hydrated. As we are constantly shedding the lining of our uterus we are at risk of losing other bodily fluids that help us to stay feeling well. Keep a water bottle close by and sip on that water during the course of your day. This is one rather simple way to embrace your period.
4. Hot Tea Can Help
Drinking a cup of hot tea, preferably something herbal will in some cases make you feel better and help you with period pain you may be experiencing. This could range from back pain, to stomach cramps to head aches in some cases. The warmth of the tea can help you embrace your period. Green teas and peppermint teas are popular choices amongst women and girls.
5. Sleep On Old Sheets
Sleeping on either old sheets or a sheet set that you won’t mind throwing out is another way to embrace your period. It is very common to experience leakage during the night as we toss and turn in our sleep. There is no shame in leaking on your sheets but using sheets that you don’t care for takes out a lot of the shame associated with this. Instead of rushing to wash your bed linen first thing in the morning, you can simply throw them out and replace them as needed.
6. Wear Comfortable Underwear
Whatever this means for you, do it! Wearing underwear that is comfortable is very important in helping to embrace your period. As with our sheets we can experience leakage in our underwear. There is nothing worse than wearing a very pretty pair of underwear and then staining them. This will look differently for everyone, so decide which cut makes you feel the best and opt for that style while you’re on your period.
7. Give Into Your Cravings When Necessary
Now, there is nothing helpful in bingeing unhealthy and processed food for the length of your cycle but you can embrace your period by giving into these cravings you’ll feel when it seems right to do so. A chocolate snack, a package of chips or something else sweet or savoury can momentarily make us happier while our hormones continue to rage. Don’t feel guilty for giving into your cravings, but keep yourself in check while you do!
8. Use A Heat Pack or Hot Water Bottle
This is most helpful for us ladies who experience pain while on our periods. The aches and pains of our monthly period can be debilitating and can in some cases impact our daily lives. Many women will struggle to work and can be completed incapacitated. Using a heat pack, some of which are disposable and can be discreetly used at work, or a hot water bottle can minimise this pain and help us to embrace our periods.
9. Over the Counter Medication
10. The Contraceptive Pill (or any contraception) in some cases.
There are some over the counter medications available without the need for a prescription that can help with period pain, these include Ponstan and Naprogesic. Ibuprofen has also been shown to relieve period pain. The contraceptive pill (known in some cases as just the pill) can alleviate the heaviness of a period and help to regulate it. These are great options to help us embrace our period from a medical perspective.
11. Pads, Tampons, Diva Cups – what is best for you?
In terms of the method you choose in order to deal with your period is entirely what you are most comfortable with. Some women prefer tampons while others will like to use pads. There is no ‘better’ option and there are so many ways to do this. Do some research and give it all a try.
12. Carry Spares
Whatever you decide to use, carry spares of them, EVERYWHERE! Keep them in your car, your purse, your pocket if you prefer. Periods can be unpredictable and we can embrace our period by making sure we are always prepared.
13. Take A Bath
Many women are afraid to take a bath when on their periods because they fear the bath will fill like blood – this is a myth. Just as with a shower, our flow will slow down in the presence of water. Taking a hot bath can help relax your muscles at this time and is just one way to practice self care when we feel our most vulnerable.
14. Go For A Walk
I know, I know. This does not seem like a good idea at all! But walking can help and the fresh air outside has been shown to improve our moods while menstruating. You do not have to walk far and you don’t have to walk alone. But this will help you embrace your period if you usually enjoy exercise and the outdoors.
15. Be Kind To Yourself
This is probably the most important practice of the lot! Be kind to yourself, I mean it! When we are on our periods we often become more sensitive to the world around us, this isn’t wrong and it doesn’t make us crazy. We are simply doing our best and that is more than enough. Practice self care in whatever way you receive it best and be patient with your emotions and your hard-working body during this time.
Do you regularly practice these tips and tricks on your period? How do you embrace your period and what works best for you? Let us know in the comments below and let us create a safe space for women to feel seen and understood.
Featured image source: https://www.pinterest.com.au/pin/660903314044257888/
A poet, INFP and an empath who is never without a book, and thoroughly enjoys a soy latte. Based in Melbourne, Australia.