By Gauri Singhal
To a young girl, who is already going through numerous changes thanks to puberty, periods might feel like a terrible, unwanted guest that is here to stay. However, since menstruation is the most natural and inevitable part of a girl’s life, she must be prepared for it before it arrives for the very first time. To make sure that the first period is less scary and more comfortable here are some things that moms and dads (yes, dads should have this conversation with their daughters) can tell their girls to better prepare them for their first period.
First things first, we do not bleed blue, we bleed RED
Leading brands that use blue ink to depict period blood are essentially attaching a message of shame to periods. Let your daughter know that we bleed red, and that there’s no need to be ashamed of it. It is important to let them know that it is natural and nothing to fret about. With the right intimate care solutions, they will be able to forget that they are on their period and just go with the flow.
Don’t let periods hold you down, you are unstoppable
After getting their first period, girls are usually sceptical about going to school or participating in co-curricular activities. Parents should urge their daughters to let go of these inhibitions because periods shouldn’t disrupt their daily lives. Today, there are multiple options such as tampons, period pain relief patches, panty-liners and other products that can make periods truly comfortable so girls can continue to remain on the go even while they are on their period.
You can run, jump and even swim if you want to
Tell your daughters that they do not have to shy away from pursuing their passions even during those days of the month. With new innovative feminine hygiene solutions like tampons, girls can run, jump, swim and exercise without worrying about stains.
Cramps are real, but you can beat them
Different women experience period pains at different intensities, and sometimes it can be bad. Since ages, women have been relying on oral medication to curb this pain but these have significant side-effects. Further, since girls are starting to menstruate at a much earlier age, it is not advisable for them to take medication. However, if you feel the period pain monster tugging at your insides, you don’t have to ingest a pill to beat it anymore. You can simply use herbal period pain patches that discreetly yet effectively soothe the cramping. So, next time period pain shows up, put on a patch, put on your best smile, and get ready to take on the day!
Personal hygiene is paramount during this time
While it is essential to maintain personal hygiene throughout one’s cycle, the menstruation period requires extra care. During the period, it is easier to contract bacterial infections or vaginitis. Therefore, parents must help their daughters understand the significance of proper cleanliness and timely changing of pads, panty-liners or tampons to avoid such situations.
Don’t shy away from periods, ever
Repeat this as many times as you can – periods are NOT a taboo. While pregnancy is celebrated in India, periods are treated in a hush-hush manner. It’s about time we break out of this regressive socio-cultural mindset. Periods should no longer be a secret between moms and daughters but can and should be discussed with brothers and dads too.
The next generation should be that of the trailblazers who finally break the shackles and speak out freely about menstruation. But, it will all start with that one talk that you have with your daughter as she stands on the threshold of puberty. Make sure it is an impactful and an empowering one, for she might be the one who changes the way women perceive their periods. In doing so, she might just change the world!
(The writer is Founder and CEO of Visionaari, parent company of Floh Tampons.)