Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

What Does a Girl Want to Know About Her First Period? continued...

That fear -- that “I’m not normal!”--can also make the usual fluctuations of early menstruation seem like dire events.

“Be sure to let your daughter know that she might not get her period every month right away. Irregular periods are common during the first year or so,” says John Steever, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics in the Division of Adolescent Medicine at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine. “Talk about the symptoms that may go along with her period, such as cramps, retaining water and weight fluctuation, mood swings, and headaches.”

No one loves menstrual cramps and other symptoms, but when we’re older, we usually know when they’re coming, and we have our tampons and over the counter pain relievers , so you’re not adding in the whole element of surprise and anxiety, says Zager.  “Young girls, when they first begin to menstruate, are usually anxious, so helping them be prepared makes these things easier to cope with.”

Girl to Woman: Your Changing Body

Teen girls: See how your body changes during puberty.
View slideshow