Seeing red: signs that your daughter’s period may be coming.

Let's be honest, when your daughter gets her first period, it's going to be a big deal.

By Angela Chavez



Some parents think of their daughter’s first period as a beautiful time of growth and change.

The rest of  us find it all a little nerve-wracking, especially when you’re not sure what to expect. Let’s go through some of the signs that your daughter’s period will be coming soon and share some tips for making the transition easier for both of you.

When Do Girls Get Their Periods?

The average age for girls to start getting their periods is 12, but in reality, it can happen to her any time between 10 and 16 years-old.  Truth is, there is no “normal” when it comes to puberty; every girl is different and will experience puberty at her own pace.

Four Tell-Tale Signs That Your Daughter’s Period is Approaching

While we can’t (yet) pinpoint the time or age that puberty will start, there are a few common signs that can indicate your daughter’s period is on the horizon. Puberty is a gradual process, so that you may notice these changes taking place over a period of several months.

The signs that your daughter is about to get her period can include:

Breast Development

Breasts usually grow for about two years before a girl gets her first period. For some girls, this can be very exciting, but others may feel self-conscious or embarrassed about their changing body. Either way, it’s essential to talk to your daughter about the changes she’s experiencing, answer her questions, and assure her that everything she’s going through is perfectly normal.

Your daughter might feel tenderness or pain in her breasts as they grow. This is called “breast buds”, and it’s common in pre-teens. You can help your daughter manage discomfort by helping her pick out a supportive and comfortable bra.

Pubic and armpit Hair

In case you don’t remember from your own experience, as girls enter puberty, they will usually start to grow hair in new and unusual place.  This hair is typically sparse at first, but it will become thicker and darker over time. Use this gauge as an opportunity to talk to her about what she can expect to happen to her body over time. This can help her mentally prepare for the changes her body is going through and make it a little less overwhelming.

Vaginal discharge

Most girls notice an increase in vaginal discharge for a few months before their first period. This is caused by the changing hormone levels (especially the increase in estrogen) during puberty. The discharge may be white or yellowish in color, and it can vary from being very thin and watery to thick and sticky. Estrogen stimulates the growth of the uterus lining, which is shed each month during menstruation. This can cause discomfort in a girl who doesn’t understand or know what to expect from her body.

Premenstrual syndrome

Many girls will experience some degree of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) for a few days before their period. Symptoms can include mood swings, irritability, bloating, breast tenderness, and fatigue. While these symptoms can be unpleasant, they usually subside once the period begins.

Acne is also a common symptom of PMS. This is caused by the increased production of testosterone, which can cause the sebaceous glands to produce more oil.

If your daughter is experiencing any combination of these symptoms, her period may be coming in a matter of days or weeks.

What you can do to help

There are a few things you can do to help your daughter through this transition.

First, it’s important to have conversations with her about what to expect and what’s happening to her body. This can help her feel more prepared and less anxious about the changes she’s experiencing.

You should also ensure she has everything she needs to manage her periods, such as pads and pain relievers. It can be helpful to have a stash of supplies on hand so she doesn’t have to worry about running to the store or asking her friend for supplies when she gets her period.

Finally, and most importantly, be supportive and understanding during this time. Puberty can be a difficult and confusing time for all children, and they need all the love and support they can get.

Bottom Line

If your daughter’s period is coming soon, don’t panic!

This is a perfectly normal and natural part of life. Just be sure to practice open communication with her about what to expect and make sure that she has everything she needs to manage her periods. With your support, she’ll get through this transition with ease.


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