Starting your period is the ultimate signal a girl is becoming a woman. But many women of all ages struggle with worries about what is right and normal for their periods. The key is to realize that everyone is different so what is normal for someone else may be different from what is normal for you.
How much blood is normal during my period?
You get your period each month because hormones (chemicals in your blood) trigger the inside lining of your uterus to clean itself. This is a normal part of how your body gets ready to start a new cycle of preparing for an egg to be fertilized if you get pregnant. This lining and a little bit of blood will flow out of your body through your vagina.
There is no “right amount” of blood to have during your period, and your period can change from month to month. Some months you may have a heavier flow and other months barely see any blood at all. Some months, you may also have thicker blood clots along with the blood.
It may be scary at first to see the blood from your period. But unless you have a medical condition that causes you to bleed excessively, you are not likely to lose too much blood during your period. In fact, although it can look like a lot of blood on your pads, the average amount of blood lost during a period is only about two tablespoons each month. But if you have very heavy bleeding so that you need to change your pad or tampon every one to two hours, or if you having bleeding for more than seven days, see your doctor right away.
Should I use tampons or pads?
This is really your choice. Some women don’t like the bulk of pads. Others don’t like how tampons feel. You may find that tampons are more uncomfortable if your flow is light, and you may decide to wear tampons sometimes and pads other times. If you are going to be swimming, you’ll want to use tampons. Leaving a tampon in for too long can sometimes make you sick, so be sure to change your tampon a minimum of every eight hours. More often than that is better.