Girls usually get their first period between the age of 9-16. Most girls get their first period when they are about 12-14 years old.
If you’ve not had your first period by the time you turn 16, we recommend you contact a youth guidance center or health care center.
The menstrual cycle is the time from the first day of your period until the next period starts.
The menstrual cycle is between 21 – 35 days and a period lasts for about 5 – 7 days. It is common for the period to be irregular when you first start getting your period1 .
Ovulation occurs when an egg is released from a follicle in the ovaries and the mature egg slides down into the fallopian tubes where it can be fertilised. During ovulation, discharge is often clear, a little stringy and stretchy.
The purpose of the follicle is to produce hormones and it does this by being transformed into a corpus luteum. The corpus luteum hormone (progesterone) helps the mucous membrane to grow and prepare to receive a fertilized egg. If fertilization does not take place, the corpus luteum is not required and it shrivels up and the level of progesterone falls.
This acts as a signal that the mucous membrane is not needed and can be ejected from the body – your period begins1 .
You bleed about 50 ml, but it can feel like more because the blood is blended with the mucous membrane. The period can vary both in consistency and colour depending on whether it is at the beginning, middle or end of a period.
How much one bleed varies from woman to woman and can also vary for the same woman during a period. Some women have very heavy bleeds without anything being wrong, but it may be good to visit a youth guidance center or health care center if you:
- Have to get up in the middle of the night to change your menstrual product.
- Bleed through your menstrual product, even though you have adjusted your menstrual product according to how heavy the bleed is.
Regular or irregular periods
Some women always have irregular periods, while others find their period being on time like a clock and knows exactly when to expect their period.
You can contact a youth guidance center or gynecologist if you are worried about your periods being irregular. Some contraceptives can help make the periods more regular.
There can be many reasons for a missed period and during pregnancy your period usually ends after a while. When you reach the menopause, it is common to miss periods.
Other factors can also result in missed periods.
Wellbeing is important
Wellbeing and how we take care of our bodies is important for the menstrual cycle. If you don’t feel well, your menstrual cycle can get disrupted.
If you have missed a period, ask yourself if you:
- are too stressed
- have not felt well for a while
- are eating too little
- are underweight or overweight
- exercise too much
- have an eating disorder
It can be difficult to know who to turn to if you don’t feel well. Below is a list of various places you can contact for help and support (in Sweden).
Tel: 0771 22 00 60
Temporary psychological support every day between 13:00 – 22:00
Do you have an eating disorder
The Mandometer Clinic
Stockholm Centre for Eating Disorders
UMO youth guidance center
If you are aged 13-25, you can also get advice and support for mental illness at your nearest youth guidance center (UMO).