Written by Lori Reichel, Ph.D.

  |  Reviewed by Hina J. Talib, MD

Menstruation (pronounced-Men-Stray-Shun) also known as a menstrual period, period, menses, or flow is a release of blood from the uterus, out through the vagina, that happens approximately every 28 days as part of your monthly cycle. Every month your body prepares for a potential pregnancy. If no pregnancy occurs, the uterus lining is not needed and shed out of your vagina as your period. Your first period is a sign that you are getting close to the end of puberty. For everyone who has a uterus, periods are a natural, healthy part of growing up.

Tips for managing a menstrual cycle
  • Realize this is a natural and normal occurrence for most people with a uterus.
  • Be sure to store menstrual products, like pads, tampons, or menstrual cups, in your locker, backpack, or other personal spaces.
  • If you experience discomfort before or during your period, talk with a trusted adult about solutions. Most people with a vulva have different ways to manage discomfort, including using a heating pad, staying hydrated, and/or doing gentle stretches.
  • If you know you are about to get your period or you have your period, consider doing something for yourself to honor this experience.

BLOOM’s Menstruation section, a safe space to answer all your questions about menstruation, aka your period. Watch videos, learn all about period products & how to use them, what the signs of your cycle are & what they mean, how to navigate PMS symptoms, start tracking your period, and much more! To learn more click here.