Puberty and Menstruation is not an easy subject to discuss, but as a mother you need to explain your little one all about it, so that she should feel positive about her developmental changes.
First and foremost thing….you stay calm and then follow the points listed here
With so much change in lifestyle and eating habits, on average, most girls start their periods when they are around ten to thirteen. Periods normally starts 2 to 2.5 years after a girl’s breasts begin to develop. It’s better to speak to them about menstruation when they are around nine or ten. If you think it’s too early, you might be in for surprise when kids share with you half knowledge regarding this from their friends. As a loving parent you must take time and explain all about biological changes that will transform them into a healthy women. This will nourish their self-esteem.
Just you and your little one
This talk need to be happening between just you and your little one. No third person need to be there. This will help her from feeling awkward or uncomfortable.
Do not plan for a lecture
Do not plan for a long talk. Since it is the first talk, keep it brief. Do not try to explain her everything in a single conversation. Explain her facts about puberty and menstruation over many such mini talks. Emphasize to them that these changes are part of natural process of growing up.
Do not sound boring
Do not pour out all science information you picked up in high school. Otherwise she will feel it to be a class from biology teacher. Pep the talk with some cookies and snacks.
Limit the talk to Menstruation and Periods
Explain to them why the monthly cycle happens and how it happens. You need not step into ‘sex’ aspect. You must also speak to them about body weight increase, development of breast, under arm and pubic hair growth and skin problems. It is also essential to brief them about menstrual hygiene. As she grows up introduce to her about how pregnancy happens and how babies take shape in uterus.
Explain with the help of visual media
We are living in the age of youtube. If you search you will find many explainer videos on menstruation that can help you in explaining this concept with ease.
Let me include some links for you
Explain with the help of comic strip
Comic strip…you might find it weird. But for sure you must check out Menstrupedia. This is a simple guide to explain menstruation and all issues surrounding it in the most friendly manner. Hats off to its founder Aditi Gupta.
Address their queries calmly
She might get worried seeing vaginal discharge. You need to reassure her by saying that physiologic leukorrhea is a normal process and its bodies way of keeping the vagina clean. If she is asking how to handle periods if she gets it at school, prepare for her a small kit which includes a sanitary pad, wet tissue or hand sanitizer, an extra pair of panties and a small chocolate. If she is worried about participating in physical activities and games, encourage her by saying that periods are just like any other normal day.
When to consult a Doctor
As a parent you need to consult a doctor only if signs of puberty including breast growth, underarm hair etc fail to appear by age of 14 or in case child complaints about heavy vaginal discharge, itches or foul odor. One need to also consider visiting a doctor in case of heavy periods or if periods are irregular.
So Moms hope you are all set to explain your little one about her journey to womanhood….