Helping women & girls go with the flo.

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Menopause: Welcome to the “Heated” Years…Navigating through “The Change”

By Lisa Weinstein

menopause - navigating through the changeEach morning before leaving the house, I used to check the weather channel to find out if I should wear a coat. But these days it truly doesn’t matter what the thermostat says….I won’t wear one anyway.

Why?

Because I am always hot.

The car thermostat could read 32 degrees and I’ll be turning the air conditioner full blast onto my sweltering face while my poor husband Bob, in the driver’s seat, quickly succumbs to hypothermia.

Yes, I have entered into the stage of life called “The Change”, also known as (cue the twilight zone music) MENOPAUSE!

Yes, menopause, where you finally get to say goodbye to your monthly “friend”. Except in my case, my “friend” didn’t want to exit my life as instantly as it had arrived.

Flashback to the 70s……………..

There I was, a gawky 12-year old cursed with huge glasses, braces, and a well-endowed body that had “blossomed” much faster that my flat chested friends. I woke up one morning, visited the bathroom as usual, looked down and behold, I had made a new “friend”.

My status in life had instantly changed.

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How to Talk to Your Parent About Menstrual Cups

By Cathy Chapman

 

When it comes to talking to your parents about menstrual care options it definitely helps to know the facts. Menstrual cups are not a new concept – In fact, they have been around for about 150 years. However, still many people may not be familiar with the concept of them. Here are some tips for talking your parents (or anyone, really) about menstrual cups!

how to talk to your parent about menstrual cupsFirst of all, What IS the menstrual cup? (The quick and friendly version.)

Menstrual cups are reusable menstrual care protection. Worn internally like tampons, they differ in that they are designed to collect menstrual flow rather than absorb it. They are safe, easy to use, and a hygienic alternative to pads and tampons!

 

Now that we have that over with….
It helps to make a list of reasons why you’re interested in menstrual cups. Points to note could be…

• The average person spends about $48-84 per year on disposable menstrual products. Menstrual cups can be a one time cost that will last for years.

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Know Your Flow

By Robyn Srigley, BA, PTS, CNP, NNCP

 

Periods are confusing. One day you are barely flowin’ and the next you’re changing your tampon every few hours. And don’t even get me started on the cramps and cravings! What gives? Well, depending on the colour and level of flow we superwomen are experiencing, there could be any number of things going on. Decode the mystery below.

How heavy is your flow

(check out the full infographic, here)

 

Light Flow
This could be one of two things. Either you’re near the beginning or the end of your regular period, or you’re not having a true period at all and are just spotting. So how do you tell the difference? Click to continue reading… »



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Something Smells pHishy

 

By Stacy LyonSomething Smells pHishy

Something Smells pHishy…

We hear it on TV commercials, we see it in ads and we read it on labels: “pH balanced”, but what exactly does that mean?

pH, or potential for hydrogen, is a measurement scale of acidity and alkalinity. Readings from 0–7 are considered acidic, pH from 7.0–14 is considered basic, or alkaline with 7.0 considered neutral.

Now what does that have to do with feminine health you ask? It’s important for every woman to not only understand the pH scale and how it affects their whole entire body but specially the fact that your vagina is considered an acidic environment. This low pH provides protection from invasions from bad bacteria and infections.

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Why Is My Period Irregular?

By Robyn Srigley, BA, PTS, CNP, NNCP

Screaming Black Woman

Aunt Flo can be such a kill joy. Bleeding for a week every month can be a real nuisance! As strong, independent women, being bogged down by cramps, mood swings, headaches and fatigue can put a real damper on the wonderful things we do in our lives every day. But what happens when we don’t get our periods on a regular basis?

This happens to women through all walks of life, for many different reasons. It’s so important to not only recognize that irregular periods aren’t normal, but that they could be an indication of something more serious. See if you’re on track with Aunt Flo below.

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Say Hello to Reusable Cloth Pads

by Jenn Marie

say hello to cloth pads

When it comes to understanding “that time of the month,” there’s no shortage of confusion among people of all ages and genders. One of the most common period-related myths is that there are only two types of feminine protection available: disposable pads and tampons. In reality, we have tons of other choices! Some of the most popular include menstrual cups, sea sponges, diaphragms, and my favorite: reusable cloth pads.

The idea behind cloth pads is simple: instead of the typical pad made from paper and plastic, cloth pads are made from fabric, allowing them to be washed and reused just like underwear. It may sound strange, but it’s not a new or unusual idea; women have been using cloth pads throughout most of history! It was only very recently, as our society shifted toward a preference for single-use products, that disposable pads and tampons were first marketed to women.

With the popularity and convenience of disposables, why would anyone want to use cloth? Here are just a few of the many reasons… Click to continue reading… »



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Tips for Fighting the Period Blues

By Leslie Vandever

How to fight the period bluesIf you get the blues, feel moody, and suffer physical discomfort immediately before and during the first few days of your menstrual period, you’re not alone.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), up to three out of four women experience premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms each month during their fertile years. Researchers believe changes in brain hormone levels, along with social, cultural, biological, and psychological factors might be the culprits, but so far, the exact cause is still a mystery.

Physical symptoms of PMS may include:
• bloating and gas
• abdominal cramps
• backache
• tender breasts
• diarrhea or constipation
• headache
• food cravings
• insomnia or oversleeping

Mental symptoms may include:
• difficulty concentrating
• forgetfulness
• sluggishness
• sadness
• tension and anxiety
• hostility
• mood swings
• changes in libido
• fear and guilt
• poor self-image

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Preparing for Puberty with Autism

By Shawna H.

 

Going through puberty can be a tough time for a young girl. That is even more true when the young lady is autistic.  There seems to be scant literature pertaining to females on the autism spectrum, and even less speaking about, or to young autistic girls about the changes of puberty, and beginning menstruation.

Preparing for Puberty with AutismI can’t speak for all females on the spectrum about getting your period, and the whole puberty process. I can only relay my experience, and maybe some of that might be helpful for other young girls, or her parents in understanding. I have heard many ladies on the spectrum who have had quite different experiences with puberty than I did.

For me, it was a change that I welcomed. I looked forward to getting my period, and becoming an adult. It was exciting to me to become a woman. I learned a lot about it at school during sex ed. There was a lot of information available during that time to learn from. I think that this may have made the biggest difference to me in not only welcoming my period, but accepting my body as one in transformation. Knowing what to expect was paramount to easing my anxiety, and allowing me to be open to change.

Here are some things that I found to be helpful in preparing me for menstruation, and other changes that occur during puberty: Click to continue reading… »



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“So I Hear You’re a Woman Now!”

It was summer 2002, right around my 11th birthday. I had gone to my dad’s house for a weekend visit and ended up getting my first period on the Friday night.

I asked my mom to come pick me up on the Saturday because my dad and his wife were just not prepared to be helpful. Periods, sexual health, etc. type topics (or any type topics, really!) have never been uncomfortable or unwelcome at my mom’s house, so when I got home, my stepdad greeted me with a loud “So I hear you’re a woman now!”, a huge smile, and a hug.

My mom generally didn’t use tampons, so her friend came by with a small box because we all planned on going swimming. They both sort of talked me through inserting it properly and comfortably from the other side of the bathroom door, and then we just went about our day! Apart from not being in the most ideal location at first, I know a lot of girls who have experienced worse! Not a bad first time!

Oh, and 12 years later, I’d highly recommend the DivaCup or another brand of menstrual cup! Super easy, environmentally friendly, and cost-effective!

Congratulations to all my fellow females who have entered womanhood! ;) And good luck to those who will soon be embarking on this beautiful journey!

Girl power!

xoxo

By JLH

 

Click Here, to share your first period story with us or check out PeriodTalk our new forum for ALL menstrual questions. 


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Be Prepared. Period. Launches Brand New Website Designed to Change the Way Ladies View & Handle Menstruation

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SEATTLE — Be Prepared. Period. has launched their brand new website and are echoing the sentiments of their fans by hailing it as “A one stop shop for all things menstrual.”

Tara Bruley, Seattle area mom, health & environmental enthusiast and founder of BePreparedPeriod.com said she created the website to help girls of all ages have a “Better Period.”

“In a culture of menstrual misinformation and societal taboos, Be Prepared Period is a welcomed resource for girls, women and parents alike. From eco-friendly products to monthly educational chats, every facet of Be Prepared is designed to inform and empower – even celebrate. With constant, compassionate advice and updates, it truly is a platform like no other for menstruation and transition from puberty; indeed, it will help all readers Be Prepared!” boasts Heather Guidone, Surgical Program Director at the Endometriosis Research Center.

Bruley states, “Periods are a topic many are still uncomfortable talking about openly, which is what hinders many from learning how to have a healthier menstrual cycle.”

Keeping the needs of so many in mind, “veteran menstruators” to girls experiencing menarche, BePreparedPeriod.com has rapidly grown to be the comprehensive menstrual resource it is today. Initially starting as a site offering 1st period kits and information for parents and developing girls, it quickly grew to also be a resource for women looking to improve their menstrual health.

Their resources include, helpful articles on a variety of topics including puberty (with articles just for dads), first periods, PMS, PMDD, PCOS, toxic shock syndrome, endometriosis and more. Click to continue reading… »



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